Running a business can be challenging at the best of times, especially when we are a small business wearing many different hats. Some days the challenges come thick and fast, other times we have some great ideas to move the business forward. It’s great to have someone to run the issues or ideas past, it makes a huge difference.

1. Who do you talk to?

We all need a support system, an inner circle of people who will give us honest advice and feedback both positive and negative. We all need to have a few people who genuinely want us to do well and who we can rely on. People we can turn to  when we face seemingly overwhelming challenges.

2. Who do you go to when times are tough?

Sharing the load on a bad day or the joy on a good day is a vital ingredient to our wellbeing, including our business wellbeing. Those cheerleaders can make even a small success so much more invigorating. They can even hold us accountable when we just aren’t cutting it.

3. Who is holding you accountable?

Having an inner circle has so many benefits, especially if you are running your own business. It is like your own think tank, a place that you can go to for wise, objective counsel to help you with the many challenges you will face in life and in business.

4. Do you have an inner circle?

If not, I highly recommend that you start building one today. Here are a few tips for you to begin with:

  1. Find people who know you well and understand your business purpose.
  2. Choose people who genuinely care enough about you to hold you accountable.
  3. Speak to people who are successful and motivated in their own right.
  4. Choose positive people who won’t erode your confidence. Leave the naysayers behind.
  5. Be selective, it’s a privilege for people to share in your journey.
  6. Above all, choose people who you have a respectful relationship with and who will tell you the honest truth.

When you do establish your inner circle, appreciate the privilege that it is. Always treat them with respect and take heed of their advice. Don’t take things personally if it’s not what you want to hear.

Remember, it may not be easy for them to give negative feedback, thank them for it.

“A leaders potential is determined by those closest to him.” John Maxwell