Jayson Gaignard was stuck on the entrepreneurial hamster wheel, building a business that he hated and buying things he didn’t need in order to impress people he didn’t even like. He was drowning in contacts, still yearning for meaningful connection. He needed community.
After joining a few entrepreneur groups, he noticed something was off. Transactional relationships were easy to come by, but he asked himself, “Would I want to have dinner with these people?”
A decade later, Jayson’s dinner parties have become one of the most exclusive communities for entrepreneurs in the world.
Jayson was named one of Forbes’ “Top Networkers to Watch” for his work curating community at MMT, serving entrepreneurs on a similar path to building deeper connections. That path always lands somewhere on the Second Mountain Journey. Because some reach the first peak and discover it’s not what they thought it would be.
Since 2013, over 19,000 entrepreneurs have applied to MMT, though historically, membership has been capped at 150 annually. We are selective about who we serve, and it shows. Our members gave us an average approval rating of 98 percent, four years in a row. We create raving fans because we know exactly who we serve best.
In his role as head curator, founder Jayson Gaignard has had the unique opportunity to connect with thousands of entrepreneurs one-on-one. He noticed a pattern, similar to one made famous by David Brooks in his book, The Second Mountain. Brooks identified a crisis of meaning that might creep up at any age. At MMT, members come to us in this state of self-discovery, examining the goals that brought them to entrepreneurship in the first place.
On the way to the top, or at the peak of presumed success, entrepreneurs discover that it’s lonely up there and the view is overrated.
Business leaders often feel isolated, not just from others but from their own values.
The first mountain is financial, linked to business growth, status and appearances. Social pressures put emphasis on wealth and reputation more than meaningful contribution. Even for those privileged enough to achieve financial independence, the goal posts keep moving.
Many entrepreneurs put their lives on hold to chase moving targets, often without questioning their own motives outside of external pressures. Some are happy to hustle hard and continue to make sacrifices, always in pursuit of more. Others feel a sense of unease.
It’s not an easy choice to climb down the first peak. You might feel depleted or experience a crisis of meaning. It’s common for entrepreneurs to imagine that there will never be enough. But wealth doesn’t mean much without contribution or a sense of purpose. It’s no surprise that superficial standards leave us lacking, or worse.
We serve entrepreneurs who question the scarcity mindset.
A staggering 72 percent of entrepreneurs are affected by mental health issues, directly or indirectly, compared to 49 percent of non-entrepreneurs. Relationships, physical health and family ties are common casualties. Our members know their personal lives need growth strategies as much as their businesses do. We strive to help them be better at both.
The answers change our lives, goals, and the kind of company we choose to keep. They trigger a search for new mentors and new markers of success. If you make it this far, don’t settle.
The second mountain is greater in size and significance. Milestone achievements are redefined, with more space carved out for meaningful relationships, positive social impact and playful curiosity. There’s a shift when you realize entrepreneurs aren’t self-made; we are community made. It’s not easy to overcome, but you don’t have to do it alone.
At MMT, we are committed to helping you be better business leaders, better partners, better parents, and better friends.
Wait, what does mountaineering have to do with MMT?
We’re getting to that.
Our community isn’t about peak performance or reaching the summit. There are loads of great books, conferences and events to help navigate rapid growth and reach the top of the first mountain. If you’re a first-time founder in an early stage, we’re (genuinely!) happy to help you find another group.
At MMT, we talk about what comes next. We serve entrepreneurs seeking clarity to determine what the second peak means for them. Together, we’ll draw a roadmap.
Where members land on this journey is a better indicator for how MMT will serve them than traditional demographics. Screening exclusively for business size, industry or employee headcount doesn’t necessarily build strong connections. Many groups use these metrics. Not us.
We’re not concerned with the questions: How big is your company, or, How much money do you make? We prefer to ask: Would we want to have dinner with you? We’d rather you be fascinating than famous.
Revenue isn’t the best benchmark for curating community.
Other groups feature celebrity speakers and host exclusive events in exotic locations. We do, too. And we consider values alongside business goals. This is reflected in our programming.
And everything in between, like The Transformational Effects of Psychedelics. We help our members build personal and professional legacies with more intimate experiences, including live and virtual gatherings that foster real community.
We offer troubleshooting for your business challenges, including 24/7 access to our Forum, an opportunity to crowdsource wisdom from a diverse community of industry leaders. We also care about you, the visionary, the leader behind the company.
This is more than just a business network. This is your community.