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Successful people need people

The 6 types of people you should have around you
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No person is an island, and if history has taught us anything it’s that every successful person has (or had) a coach, mentor or support person to help them on their way – no matter the inherent brilliance or natural talent they may have started with. Oprah has a coach, Tony Robbins has a coach, Richard Branson has a coach, even Buddha had a coach! None of these people got to where they are on their own – they realised early on that they would get more out of themselves if they had the support and advice of a coach. It's these coaches who not only educated and advised, but also empowered and held these individuals accountable to their success.

Success simply doesn’t – can’t – happen alone
We’ve all had coaches and teachers in life – particularly as children. Who taught you to play football or the piano? Which singer/sportsperson/teacher/relative did you idolise and try and emulate? Who nurtured, inspired or believed in you even if only for a moment? Who was a great role model or provided great values? (Who showed you who or what or how you didn’t want to be?) All of these people are types of coaches who either directly or indirectly taught you something and helped you improve. So, why as adults do we let that role slip out of our lives? Regardless of whether you’re a politician, CEO, community leader, teacher, entertainer, religious leader or sports person, your accomplishments will depend greatly on the people you surround yourself with. Therefore, building a team of advisors and cheerleaders is super important if you want to continue to grow and contribute to the world.

The tricky part is knowing who to get on your team and when!
At certain times throughout our lives we need different types of teachers and supporters. Sometimes it’s a mentor who's 'been there done that' and can show you how – other times it’s a counsellor who can shine a light on a very specific hurdle. Knowing when to bring the right person on board is key to the speed at which you sink or swim in your next chapter.

Let’s take a look at six types of people you should consider for your team:

  1. Mentor – An experienced individual who acts as an advisor, guide, role model, advocate and support to someone with less experience. A mentor often does this by sharing information about their own career path or particular expertise. You’ll benefit most from a mentor when you’re new to a profession or skill.
  2. Counsellor – Counsellors create the conditions that allow a person to identify the root cause of a problem that may be affecting some aspect of behaviour or life – they guide people to identify critical past incidents that may still be causing issues. Counsellors are often sought in times of major change or crisis.
  3. Manager – Managing people involves organising and coordinating their activities to achieve organisational objectives. Managers are interested in the present and immediate future and make decisions, formulate policy, and control direct organisational resources, including people. A great manager will help bring the best out of you in your day-to-day tasks so you can prove your competence.
  4. Leader – Leaders are visionaries and master communicators. They're concerned with the future and are focussed on developing, enabling and empowering people, and embedding positivity and collaboration. They inspire and motivate people to work towards common goals, to contribute and connect, and to embrace and realise the shared vision. You’ll seek an inspirational leader when you're ready to move on to a new challenge, new organisation or new industry.
  5. Coach – A coach unlocks a person's potential to maximise their own performance. They help people to learn, rather than teach them how to do something. They aim to improve ability and capability in whatever area of personal or professional life is required, by identifying a desired set of circumstances, examining how that contrasts with current circumstances and then planning a series of steps to move forward. They focus on the here-and-now with a view forward, rather than on the distant past or distant future. A coach is often a consistent companion to those who seek continuous improvement.
  6. Friend – Friends are typically going to be super supportive of you and your choices, whatever they may be! They're a necessary positive force in our lives to help us on our way and encourage our sometimes hair- brained ideas. However, be mindful that they'll want the best for you, always, but possibly don’t always know what that is (especially when it comes to your professional life, unless they’re in the same industry). We all need positive, dependable friends – just be aware of their bias!

“Successful people ask for help” – Camille Preston, executive coach and leadership expert.

As a coach I'm certain that, no matter how successful we are or feel right now, we all need a team of people around us to teach, lead, challenge and lift us up to become the best possible version of ourselves.

– Lisa Stephenson, Founder, The Coach Place Global

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