You need to associate with people that inspire you, people that challenge you to rise higher, people that make you better. Don’t waste your valuable time with people that are not adding to your growth. Your destiny is too important. – Joel Osteen
Excellence is infectious; same with failure. Success and failure are predictable. Why is it that most professional football players want to play for Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Barcelona, Real Madrid, AC Milan and some other top football clubs? The reason is simple; they want to identify with the best. Zig ziglar said, ‘‘You can’t fly with the eagles if you keep scratching with the turkey.’’
Just like in football and other spheres of life, the circle you mingle with, will play a big role in your career. The people you identify with in life will likely contribute to what you will become.
Choose your crowd carefully
Successful people follow paths that lead to desired destinations. They go to places that will add value to their lives. Success identifies with folks who follow simple principles that lead to success. It doesn’t matter if you are in sales or any other career path. The rule is the same. The path to a successful life follows defined principles. You must define your vision. You must design your mission. You must define your circle. You must choose your crowd. You must get better daily. All these are not achieved by accident. They are planned and pursued. Success is not by chance!
Follow the leader
Who is your mentor? Who is your role model? The person you look up to is likely going to have a lot of influence on you. If you identify with the best in your industry, there is every tendency that you will continue to improve. You will continue to learn new things that will make you relevant in your industry.
Birds of a feather, they say, flock together. When you brainstorm with the best brains in your industry, there is every tendency that you will begin to perform well. You will learn their success secrets and their general approach to issues. Identify with mastermind groups. Do everything to get better.
Maureen, my wife, encourages me to go to where I will learn something or impart knowledge. This wise counsel has really helped me in my career. I always go to people who I know have been there before me to learn from their experiences.
I also mentor a lot of people. I remember the day I went through a two-hour unscheduled session with a veteran salesman in the pharmaceutical industry, Mazi Udo-Chijioke. He was the national sales manager of his company. He led me into the strategy he used in selling a particular product that appeared tough to sell. The area managers had given him reasons they think the product would be a hard sale. He did not agree with the area managers because he believed they had not done enough to sell the product.
He told me that he later invited the area managers and apportioned the presumed hard to sell product according to each area manager’s territory. When that meeting ended, the area managers realised that they had the sole responsibility to sell all the products apportioned to them in their territory and that they could no longer give further excuses. The strategy worked! The product was subsequently sold. It was sold within a comfortable period for his company.
I listened to him attentively during this period and asked questions where necessary. I experienced a similar situation, months later ,and, of course, I applied exactly the same strategy the veteran salesman taught me. Follow the leader. Learn from the best!
Your circle is a big influence!
Psychology teaches that environment is a major determinant of behaviour. A lot of authorities have supported this thought. I have written a lot about it too.
One of the most significant aspects of life is people. I believe in mingling with the right people. I believe in quality people. I periodically take stock of my ‘‘Friends’ List’’ for necessary adjustments. I keep friends who are like-minds; folks who understand my vision in life and whose vision I understand. I spend valuable time with people who want to add value; individuals who live for their dreams.
I mentor a lot of willing minds; people who want to go all the way to get better. I go the extra mile to assist them to discover themselves. I stay far away from dream-killers and time-wasters! I run far away from the man or woman who lives without a purpose.
Some people wake up daily without dreams and plans. They just exist and consistently refuse to change! I have encountered a lot of individuals in my life. Some people have decided to remain the way they are, even when they know they are not making headway. In all honesty, some people plan to fail even when a lot of people are working hard to succeed. Mingle with the right people. The people you spend your time with matter a lot.
When you identify yourself with the right people and the right circle, you can’t afford to fail because you have surrounded yourself with competent people. When you move with the best hands in your industry, you will be privileged to access the best strategy and privileged market information. This strategy has worked for many successful men we know today. Review your friends’ list now! It’s time to become a better you.