By SD Voyager | Originally posted on: http://sdvoyager.com/interview/meet-barbara-eldridge-mind-masters-mission-valley/
Today we’d like to introduce you to Barbara Eldridge.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Barbara. So, let’s start at the beginning, and we can move on from there.
My experience in marketing, leadership and management positions with nationally recognized multi-million dollar companies inspired me to look into being in business for myself. I purchased a distributorship with Success Motivation Institute that enabled me to market training programs in planning and management to hundreds of small business professionals.
I became a member of SMI’s elite President’s Honor Club, which recognized excellence in sales and client service development. As a business owner experiencing the challenges, others face in an ever-changing marketplace gave me the desire and experience to start Mind Masters. Over the last 27 years, I have facilitated the growth and development of thousands of small and micro/entrepreneurial businesses.
The Mind Masters program has stood the test of time with entrepreneurs around San Diego County with a client retention level each year of over 85%, business owners stay involved an average of two to five years. While most business failures happen within the first three years, my clients, active and inactive, are still in business after five years or more successfully.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It was a frustrating and challenging time. The distributorship I was with, Success Motivation Institute was not supporting those of us in the field with new programs to sell. Other local distributors were in litigation with them, all the while the Company was asking me for support.
In desperation for a resolution, I reached out to my own Mastermind group for answers as to whether or not to stay or figure out another path to take. To my amazement, they encouraged me to start mastermind groups for others. As they cheered me on, those positive expectations gave me the confidence to take that next big step without “big” brother like an SMI looking over my shoulder.
There were two things that I had to wrestle with; first one of my Mastermind buddies, Ron, a take charge kinda guy, wanted to do the business with me and second me having the confidence to go out on my own without a big name behind me. After all, what did I have to bring to the table? Then I had an ‘ah hah’ moment, like a new day dawning, I realized I had been networking with and selling to entrepreneurs all along, and they were the kind of people I really liked working with. I felt I could really serve them.
This is what I always knew I wanted to do, and then it was there. It was an opportunity I had to seize with both hands. Despite what my buddy Ron wanted, I was so excited I was willing to go it alone and step through the door and started to invite other entrepreneurs to experience the power of a Mastermind group. And it’s been 27 years of Mind Masters success that lets me know I made the right decision.
We’d love to hear more about what you do.
My experience in marketing, leadership and management positions with nationally recognized multi-million dollar companies inspired me to look into being in business for myself.
When I started my first business, I experienced the need to have the same benefit of support that large company CEO’s had of discovering what works (and what doesn’t).
They had forums of their peers, allowing them to leverage the skills and education of others. I wanted the kind of connection time with other business owners as a way to leap forward in my thinking and results.
“I founded MIND MASTERS because all small business owners, working alone, need a sounding board, a forum, a resource for their ideas. I wanted MIND MASTERS to become their Advisory Board – a resource often not available by virtue of the fact that these are indeed ‘very small businesses.’” Recently I have Certified 2 Mind Masters facilitators in different areas of California and looking to add more in the coming year.
What were you like growing up?
When you are shy and introverted, it was easy to get lost in the crowd, so my parents sent me to small private all-girl schools even through college. My brother loved to dance, and I made a great practice partner, which allowed me to go to dances with his older friends.
Somehow, I always got into leadership positions whether on the Student Council, networking organizations or even my Church Board of Directors. I read just to keep up with business, my purpose is to maximize my own untapped potential for concentration, creativity, and learning and in the process help others to do the same. The mission of Mind Masters is to provide a system that encourages, challenges and stimulates personal, professional and financial growth and supports the changes necessary for success.
Also, in conjunction with a not for profit organization focused on programs for returning Veterans, we have introduced a “Mind Masters” type program to support Vets who want to enter entrepreneurship. Everything being proposed by other programs emphasize jobs. The Operation Vetrepreneur program is reaching out to those who want the freedom of business ownership.