No matter how smart, how connected, or how hardworking you are, no one gets to the top without a team. No one succeeds alone. Somewhere along the way, there are those who help you briefly, those who help for a lifetime, and those who may be in and out of your life and your journey to the top of your profession.
From rock radio to e-commerce to speaking, writing, and more, I have found that these three people on my team consistently help me the most on any project I am working on:
A mentor is someone who had gone before you in your industry or profession and succeeded. This is someone who has made the mistakes, found a way forward to success, gathered a supportive network they can share, and may even have access to capital.
You should have specific goals and questions in mind each time you meet with your mentor. A mentor is not a therapist, nor are your regular meetings a “bitch” session. Use the time to run ideas past someone who can help and get as much information and advice as you can. And, act on this advice, or you are wasting everyone’s time.
Don’t think you need a mentor? Even Bill Gates has Warren Buffett. And, I’m pretty sure Warren Buffett doesn’t need a mentor at this point, but even he turns around and considers Gates a mentor occasionally.
We are not talking about a personal, get-your-body-in-shape-trainer. Nope. We are talking about a trainer here for your brain. Smart, successful people know they are not the most intelligent person in the room and, if they are, they know they are in the wrong place and need to do something about it.
You want to keep learning and growing in anything you do. Webinars, conferences, meetings, personal coaching, reading articles here on The Growth Center, and even industry happy hours are all places you learn.
Does your profession have certifications? Are you working towards those? They are usually great learning opportunities often sanctioned and even paid for by your company.
Other lessons come from reading regularly, whether it be motivational books or biographies of other successful people. And, you are watching the news–or at least doing a pass of the headlines a couple of times a day. Right? Keeping up with the headlines and understanding current events is vital to your success.
A “no” person is probably the number one individual most of the wanna-be rock stars I worked with for over 20+ years in rock radio should have had and didn’t. This missing character is why the majority of these wanna-be rock stars never went anywhere – or even worse – became one-hit-wonders never to be heard from again. Essentially, it’s someone that will say “no “to you.
You want this one person on your team. It needs to be someone that you trust, that has your best interests at heart – for me, that is Wonder Husband. This is the person that can say, “I don’t think that is a good idea.” Or can tell you the people you are dealing with maybe aren’t the best. This is someone who can be totally honest with you, and you don’t freak out or get mad and storm off. Or, if you do, it is short-lived, and you come back for more advice and help.
It’s also not a bad idea to have this person check over important emails or snail mail before you send these messages as well as keep an eye on your social media posts. This person should be able to tell you when you are getting a bit snarky or stepping over the line.
Can you think of anyone in your inner circle that does this? If not, you don’t have The No Person, and you better find one soon. It is always good to have someone in the “no” on your team.