I’ve made everyone I’ve worked for a lot of money. Which I was happy to do. Until I figured out that I didn’t want to spend my life building someone else’s empire without building my own.
When I look back at my childhood, I’ve always been entrepreneurial. My first business was in the 3rd grade when I went door-to-door selling handmade yarn dolls. It wasn’t for the money. Like most creatives, it was because I loved making things and wanted to do it my way.
But somewhere between then and now, I settled into the comfortable security of working for someone else.
First it was playing in the WNBA because it was what I loved. Then it was coaching college basketball, because it was a 6-figure income and I knew the sports industry. Then it was corporate sales, because they gave me a raise and told me managing a territory was almost like running your own business – which it is.
But almost doesn’t count.
At some point, I started to get uncomfortable. I wanted to make something again. I wanted to help people, and I wanted to do it my way.
This shift in mindset came with a realization. As I started to formulate my ideas and put together a plan of action, I realized I didn’t have the right people around me to make it happen. And I like playing Super Woman as much as you do but neither of us can do it alone.
So I thought back through my life, and being at the top of each field I pursued. Who helped me get there? What roles were indispensible on the path to success?
I knew that if I could fill those roles relating to my future goals, I could repeat that result.
Here are the 5 people you need in your life to make it in business. No matter where you are on your journey, these people will help you get to where you want to go!
- The Unwavering Believer
Proving people wrong gets tiring. The weight of their low expectations is heavy. Not so heavy that you can’t lift it. But you do need someone who will hold your arms up when you get tired.
That person who reminds you of your strength when all you see is weakness, and says, “you can,” when the “can’ts” get too loud. She doesn’t encourage at the expense of honesty, but always finds a way to lovingly refocus your attention on the ability to figure out and overcome. She reminds you who you are when you forget and never counts it as an obligation or a burden, but a privilege to be there.
You can absolutely “Have It All.” But this person assures that you’ll never have to do it alone. Who is your Unwavering Believer?
- The Director
None of us know everything. And being the ambitious woman you are, trying new things is a must. You need someone who is an expert in your given field, and willing to share lessons learned the hard way.
That person has credentials on paper and fruit of those credentials in her life. She doesn’t look down on you for being less experienced, but instead recognizes your talent and enjoys helping you make the most of it. She isn’t threatened by your potential or the possibility of success because she’s secure in what she’s built.
Of course you’re smart enough to figure it out on your own. But you realize that time is priceless. You need someone who can give you direction because of her experience. Who is your Director?
- The Networker
They say, “Who you know is your business card and who knows you is your resume.”
Successful women have the right people in those two categories.
You need someone who expands your circle. She is a master at mutually beneficial partnerships and has no problem connecting you to others. She knows helping you shine will never dull hers. When you need something, she says, “Oh, I know a person for that,” and then sends you contact information or makes a warm introduction.
She may not spend a ton of time working with you on your business or social calendar. But you know that if you need anything, she will get it done or find someone who can. You can’t meet everyone yourself. Who is your Networker?
- The Strategist
Part of the journey is learning to trust your own voice and your own intuition. It’s a must. But sometimes your voice gets you stuck and you can’t see the next step. You need someone to help you see things differently.
That person who listens without judging, asks the right questions and advises without an agenda. She gives you options without demands, and doesn’t take it personally when you choose another way. While talking to her, you regularly say the magical phrase, “Wow, I’ve never thought of it that way before.”
You often know what steps are in your best interest. But when you don’t, she’s there to help you see things from another angle. Who is your Strategist?
- The Spiritual Advisor
You ever wanted to do the right thing in a situation, but honestly didn’t know what that was? Or needed someone you know prays to pray specifically for you?
Whatever our beliefs, we all need at least one person who walks the talk and is willing to walk with us. That person you can go to for just the right spiritual advice in any situation, who reminds you to believe in miracles and trust. She doesn’t expect you to be perfect but pushes you to grow. She walks in love without religiosity and faith without entitlement.
Your spirituality is a beautiful thing. But this was never meant to be a solo journey. Who is your Spiritual Advisor?
Which of these five do you already have in your inner circle and which are the relationships you need to find? Leave a comment below and share with anyone in your inner circle!
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Chantelle Anderson is a Life Designer and Confidence Coach who helps women silence their insecurities, walk in confidence and live life on their own terms.