Surrounding Ourselves with the “Right” People – Why it Matters

There is something to be said for perseverance.  For the ‘stick to it ness’, not giving up or in.  No matter how hard it is or how long it’s hard, you just don’t give up.  I have many examples of this in my life.  I can only attribute the ‘knowing’ to my faith.  The times when I didn’t give up on something I wanted or envisioned for my life or my career something inside of me just knew to keep going, keep moving, keep trying and to not give up.  
That same tenacity has proved useful in building a career and a family.  As long as I can remember I have taken chances.  My sister would tell you that I like risk.  I’m not certain that is absolute, I don’t mind risk and I don’t shy away from calculated risk.  I think risk is a great tool.  I also have a firm belief that things will work out, maybe not how I like but they will work out and maybe even make sense at some point. 
Sometimes people marvel at my accomplishments but truthfully my recipe was and is tenacity, flexibility, a willingness to learn, an enthusiasm to try and a motivation to get better.  Perhaps my secret ingredient is that I ask for things I want.  I ask God and I ask people who I know can help me get closer to my desired end state.  And you know what?  I have very rarely been turned down or out.  Seldom have people decided to ‘not’ help me.  When they did, that reality check in and of itself made our relationship clear. Sometimes that reality sucked, but the long game proved much better for having weeded them out.  And I’ve also learned that there are always people willing to help you. 

So, take my ‘knowing’ and my helpful people coupled with calculated risk and you can pretty much map out my adulthood.  
If you look on Facebook or other social media there is a plethora of phrases, quotes and pictures telling us to surround ourselves with people that are right for us.  How do you do that? 

My opinion is that we all know who is and isn’t good or right for us and where we are headed.  We know the friends that are more competitive than supportive, the ones that point out our flaws and not our gifts.  The ones that take pleasure in our weight gain, failure and distress. Just like we know the ones that hold us up, listen when we cry, give us safe places to hide and remind us of blessings and how awesome we really are.  Those are the people that will stay up all night with you to mastermind some plan, or take your call at any hour or simply listen, guide, reinforce and believe.  These are the people to surround yourself with and these are the people that will help you, and seek others help for you.  And I also believe bad friends are like bad habits, sometimes it just takes a decision to move you in the right direction.
You know the right friends (+family) because your heart is at ease with them.  You know they will be your cheerleaders and they will forgive you when you are not nice without much effort or ask.
These people are imperative to how you will navigate your world.  These people will make the darkness and the hurt of life survivable.  I am blessed by many good friends.  I am quadrupile blessed by my best friend who for 42 years has been my sounding board, my safe zone, my anti-anxiety, my cheerleader, my corrector, my truth teller, my security and my faith restorer.  

It is this woman who believed in me when I stopped believing in myself.  This woman who forgave my mistakes, big and small – and there were and will be many.  And it is the people now, who surround me, that help me persevere and not give up because if they believe I can do it, why shouldn’t I?

If you take all these contemplation’s and throw it at your business will it stick?  The same methodology should apply in terms of surrounding yourself with people at work or for your business.  Every business has a life cycle, or if you are lucky, multiple life cycles, and in that cycle you need to have people who will believe when you don’t, who will cheer you on to not give up or in.  People who will help you and be honest with you.  People who want you and your company to do well.  People who attain their worth from more than their pay cheque.  

Hire for motivation, alignment to your company goals and vision, value system synchronicity and a willingness to try.  Abolish bullying, gossip and hurtful competition.  Incentivise champion tactics and sportsmanlike behaviours.  Infuse safety, forgiveness, empathy, flexibility and opportunities to help.  Just add some gratitude and that looks like one heck of a recipe.  
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