Great success is seldom if ever achieved in isolation. Irrespective of how much natural talent or ability someone possesses, they still need the support of other people. This is even truer in the case of any leader who wants to successfully lead any team to greatness. The level of success, which any leader is able to achieve is determined by the people they choose to surround themselves with. No leader can possess all the skills, abilities and attributes necessary to be a great leader. They must strategically identify and invite people with strengths in areas where they have weaknesses to join their team. This will bolster and support their efforts to lead their team to succeed.

Mother Teresa epitomised this concept when she said “You can do what I cannot do, I can do what you cannot do. Together we can achieve great things” The significance and potential for team members to support and assist one other to greatness is not a new concept, but certainly one, which has become more refined as the years have passed. It is never prudent to invest energy to improve areas where you have weaknesses, but rather to focus your effort on improving your strengths. To this end it is therefore wise to rather find people who excel in areas where you have weaknesses and invite these people to join your team. When you build a team of diverse people with varying levels of skill and ability, who have strengths, which support each other, you have the makings of a great team.

A perfect example of team members with varying levels of skill, knowledge and different attributes is the team, which supported Lance Armstrong to win seven Tour De France titles. He had Chris Carmichael anchoring the team with his knowledge of specific training regimens to bring the best out in Lance and Johan Bruyneel who offered the team invaluable input on tactics. Both of these men possessed strengths in areas where Lance had weaknesses. With the support of these two men, and the discovery cycle team, lance managed to bring the best out in himself and went on to achieve levels of success not matched by anyone else in history.

To become a great leader it is imperative that you explore your weaknesses and identify people with strengths in those areas to support you. There are a number of things great leaders need to do well to successfully lead their teams to greatness. There are not many people on this planet who have the ability to do all of them exceptionally well. So in order to grow into a great leader you must have an inner circle of support, to assist you in the areas where you need help. The people you strategically choose to bring into your circle of influencers or inner circle will make or break you and the level of success you get to enjoy, will be directly proportional to their ability to support you in the areas where you have weaknesses.

When you create your circle of influencers or inner circle, it is crucial that you think strategically. Avoid the natural tendency to surround yourself with people you like or with whom you feel comfortable. The people closest to you most certainly impact your effectiveness as a leader and either bolster or limit your potential as a leader. If you want to form a really great circle of influencers around you, it is crucial that you are intentional in your efforts to build relationships with the right people. When selecting people to support you, keep your vision and mission in mind and identify areas where you have weaknesses, which will hinder your ability to achieve your vision. Armed with this information try to identify the right people to support you and put a plan in place to invite these people into your circle of inner circle.

When selecting these crucial people to join your circle of influencers or inner circle, see if they meet the following criterion:

•Do they have the ability to influence others? One of the keys to expand your influence as a leader is to surround yourself with people who you can influence others to move in a specific direction. Your role is then to ensure that they can then influence these people to follow your lead.
•Explore their skills, abilities and attributes and see if they are complimentary to your own and the other people in your inner circle. There is great wisdom found in bringing people with strengths, where you have weaknesses into you circle.
•Only include people who add value to everyone in your team. When you include people in your circle who add value to everyone around them, you multiply the potential of everyone in your team.
•When building your circle, ensure that you look at the potential for everyone to work together. Consider how team members are going to interact and try to ensure that all the people in your circle are a good fit.
•The people in your circle must complement each other and help each other to raise their game. They must be open to help each other and readily share information and wisdom.
•They must possess high integrity, consistently display excellence, maturity and always show good character.

I am very blessed with the people who fill my circle, made up of my wife, close friends, my master mind group, admired colleges and mentors. Every one of them adds significant value to my life and helps me to have an impact well beyond what I could ever hope to achieve alone. I have a very clear picture of what I want to achieve, keeping this in mind, I am constantly on the lookout for people to invite into my inner circle. Developing an effective circle of influencers is an on-going exercise, as your circumstances change, so too must your circle of influencers. Building a strong circle of influencers around is not something that happens over night or ever stops. It is a never ending process of growth. As you expand your circle of influencers, so too will your impact and influence expand.

No leader starts out with a strong circle of influencers, they need to gradually build and develop theirs over time. The crucial thing to keep in mind is that although it won’t happen in a day, if you are constantly focused on building your circle daily, you will eventually have really strong support from your circle of influencers or inner circle. The secret to building a strong circle of influencers or inner circle is to constantly be on the lookout for the right people, to consistently hire the best staff you can find and to invest as much into developing these people as possible.

Author's Bio: 

Andrew is an expert and master teacher that speaks and teaches self-leadership, expanded awareness, effectiveness, efficiency and productivity. He guides individuals and business professionals, to identify, prioritise and carry out the right activities, consistently, so that they can maximise their personal effectiveness and deliver their best; on time, every time. All the tools and techniques Andrew teaches; have been tested in the laboratory of his own life and the many successful businesses he has owned and led, over the past 20 years. These strategies have seen Andrew achieve financial independence and reach a point of harmonious balance in all areas of his life. His purpose is to help as many people as possible, achieve similar or better results and to show them how they can realise their full potential, both personal and professionally and to help them live a meaningful life, where they are fulfilled in all areas.