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Who You Surround Yourself with Matters: Choosing People that will Excel Your Growth.

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April 2, 2024


Why Entrepreneurs Need Like-Minded People for Growth.


We have all heard the adage, “You are who you hang out with;” or in other words, you are your friends. Whether it was from a parent warning you of the friend group you were frequenting in high school, or a professional mentor guiding you on the right path, this advice is not just something to consider; it’s what will make or break you on your journey to greatness.

Research shows that we are psychologically inclined to take after the people that we are surrounded by, which is called “Group Influence”. This influence can manifest in various forms, including conformity, where individuals adjust their behaviors or opinions to align with the group norms; compliance, where individuals act in accordance with a directive from the group; and obedience, where individuals follow direct orders from an authority figure within the group. It is no wonder that communities start to believe, act, and support similar ideas and behaviors.

Group influence can lead to positive outcomes, such as enhanced collaboration and the fostering of social norms that promote the well-being of its members. However, it can also result in negative consequences, such as being influenced to quit, accept mediocrity, or even ruin reputations by association. Who you surround yourself with has a direct impact on your beliefs, drive, and goals.

Another key effect that research has found in the realm of influence is called the “Pygmalion Effect”, named after the Greek myth of Pygmalion, where a sculptor’s great expectations for his statue resulted in it coming to life. The Pygmalion effect refers to a psychological phenomenon where higher expectations lead to improved performance in others. Essentially, when teachers or leaders expect more of others, those individuals perform better.

It might seem counterintuitive to surround yourself with people who expect more of you; there is a pressure associated with this kind of influence, and humans are naturally inclined to take the path of least resistance. However, entrepreneurs and business owners don’t fall into this category. They are changemakers, trail blazers, and leaders that have chosen to create something of their own and pursue a path that requires commitment and effort. These people, who may seem crazy on the outside, are the ones that truly effect change and influence in our society. Those that get the furthest are the ones that surround themselves with like-minded leaders that inspire growth, competition, and new ideas.

If you are someone that is trying to grow and advance themselves, the first thing you should be reviewing is the people you surround yourself with. Do the people around you inspire you? Do the people around you pursue growth on a regular basis? Are those closest to you having conversations about positive topics, or are they tearing others down? When you leave a meeting with your colleagues, do you feel uplifted or weighed down?

All these points are important to consider when you are an entrepreneur or business owner working towards achieving success and growth. People can be your greatest resource, or your biggest hurdle. If you find yourself lacking a community that inspires you, don’t be afraid to branch out and seek new connections. The Chamber provides countless opportunities to meet leaders and changemakers in our community, and we invite you to be strategic in the connections you make.


Looking to get more involved? Contact to learn about all the opportunities the Chamber offers for business growth and connection.

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