The responsibilities of owning a business or leading a team are substantial, from making the right choices when strategically planning, to hiring and firing when building a team. It can be overwhelming at times. Particularly when we face challenges, sometimes they seem to hit us one after the other.
So where do we find the support we need? We all need people who will listen to, us bounce around ideas or offer a valued opinion. We need an inner circle. A group of people we can count on in good times and bad. Those people will make a huge contribution to our success.
So where do you turn to for advice?
Do you have an inner circle? A support network made up of people whose only agenda is to see you do well? Being surrounded by strong people who will give you the encouragement, advice and guidance you need in your professional life is one of the best things you can do for yourself.
A problem shared…
We’re all familiar with the proverb about sharing our problems. I’m not sure that it halves them, but it certainly makes life easier when you can speak about difficulties with the right people. Having the ability to share the tough times is a bonus, when you can do that with people who understand you and your business, it’s invaluable.
“Accountability breeds responsibility” – Stephen R Covey
There are many positive aspects of having a strong inner circle. It can be akin to having your own board. One that is full of people who will offer you guidance, experience and not least of all, accountability.
If you do not have a strong inner circle, I cannot recommend highly enough that you go about building one.
The following pointers will help you to get started.
- Look for people you have a strong connection with. They should know you well, warts and all. They should also know about your professional life and why you have chosen to do what you do. They should understand your purpose.
- Only choose people who will hold you accountable. It is very easy to say what you think someone wants to hear. We need to be either brave or to really care about the other person to speak the truth and hold them accountable. Find people like that.
- There is no point taking advice from someone who does not have the experience, or the success, to be able to give you well informed opinions. Select people who have earned the right to be your trusted advisers.
- While it’s great to get honest opinions and to be held accountable, there is nothing to be gained from surrounding yourself with negative people. Your inner circle are your cheerleaders, they need to be strong and positive.
- Most important of all, the relationship you have with those in your inner circle should be based on trust, honesty and respect. Anything less and they will not contribute to your professional wellbeing.
Once you have established your inner circle, show the gratitude and respect that it deserves. It is a privilege to have people who are invested in seeing you do well and who take the time to give you guidance and feedback, both negative and positive. Appreciate both for the gift that they are.
“A leader’s potential is determined by those closest to him.” – John Maxwell