Jamasen Rodriguez at the NYSE during the Kairos Society Summit.

Its always good to be well-rounded and versed in popular topics, however does being a “jack of all trades, master of none” matter in today’s world? Can anyone be a master of many trades? Maybe Tim Ferris would have a better answer for that one. It seems that in my ever growing entrepreneurial communities I am always meeting someone that has a profound skill in something unconventional and then being the CEO of some company with millions in revenue. Perhaps you can be a master of many trades.

There are more entrepreneurial communities popping up all over the world every day, each having their differences. I am actively engaging in at least 3 communities in any given week and I’m not sure if I could continue the speed at which my companies grow and the knowledge I learn without them. I am proud to be a part of the Sandbox community, Kairos Society, and Ballers group. I have learned so much from my friends in these groups such as: how to raise funding from Venture Capitalists, doing business in china, creating engaging community work spaces, and even how to do backflips (I have yet to succeed at that one).

Affinity groups are invaluable tools for any entrepreneur in order to grow in maturity and increase their cultural horizon. These are the people you could make invaluable business partners or life long friends. You never know what someone has been through in their life or who they know. My CTO for Tier5 often asks me about how to join these groups and what the people and events are like, so I’ll just answer them all here.

How to join? For most groups there is a selection process to determine whether you are qualified to even join let alone participate in discussion. However, like anything in life, if you know someone in the group and you befriend others, you should have little problem getting in. Speaking of. . . Sandbox Applications for the Washington D.C. Hub are now open for 2014. Hurry and apply!

I’ve already described what the people are like but to summarize: they are audacious, unconventional, and limitless. World champions some of them. They are also some of the most humble people. When you are around people that have all done great things, you feel very humble.

Events are the best time to get to know the people in the affinity group on a deeper level. Events range from wine and cheese nights, all the way to retreats to Croatia, Switzerland, and Nairobi.

In short, its best to surround yourself with amazing people as you are the average of the people you engage with the most. Forget being a jack of all trades and focus at mastering your one or two different skills. The affinity groups allow you to meet all the other masters. So it is these affinity groups that consist of masters of all trades.

-J

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