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The best thing about The Big Business Contest has nothing to do with prizes and everything to do with people.

Not only will two lucky winners work closely with experienced business people to transform their businesses over a four-month period, they will also become part of an exclusive community of entrepreneurs as interested in doing well as doing good.

That community is Maui Mastermind Online, an extension of the Maui Millionaires brand that offers daily tips to members to better manage and leverage their wealth. Twice a year, participants are handpicked to attend Maui Mastermind, an intensive week of learning and networking in Hawaii. Aside from being a highly exclusive event — the $30,000 US attendance fee and rigorous interview process makes it out of reach for the average person — it is the social good that comes out of the retreat that makes it priceless.

Between sessions on the latest in wealth accumulation and sunbathing on the beach, attendees work in teams to take up a social cause and make plans to do something about it. According to co-founder David Finkel, one group from the first retreat made it its mission to save a Mexican orphanage that was scheduled to close after Christmas. The group donated $10,000 US, sourced local builders and managed to give these children a new home. This is one of many ways the community is giving back to society.

Finkel believes the reason attendees are passionate about doing good has a lot to do with where they are in their lives: "Participants tend to fall into two groups. They either sold their businesses and made their fortunes at a young age, or have recently retired with considerable financial security. So the question they face is 'Is this all there is?'" Being able to use their experience and rolodexes to make an impact on others gives his clients a tremendous sense of accomplishment and satisfaction, "It is the giving aspect that appeals to them most," he says.

Clearly, "having real passion" is fundamental to the Maui Mastermind community and to the success of entrepreneurs, and it is exactly the quality that both Finkel and renown business strategist Elizabeth Kanna will look for in applicants. Flexibility is also important because, "there is nothing more frustrating than spending the time and energy to work with someone only to have them ignore the advice out of fear," adds Finkel.

Interested small to mid-size businesses should apply by explaining how winning this contest could help take your company to the next level by April 30, 2008. Finkel and Kanna will be shortlisting 15 semi-finalists, from which two will win valuable prizes and invaluable contacts — all the while doing some good for the world.