Hi, I’m Andrea Urquhart. Welcome to The Specialist Studio, my bespoke business mentoring space for therapists and professional coaches growing their consultancy. Today’s article explores how the company we keep influences our success and unleashes our potential.

The greatest secret to success in business is who you surround yourself with and how you respond to them.

There’s something I’m coming to understand in greater depth: Who I hang out with counts. 

Not just for my happiness, not just in my social life, but in my business life too.

Relationships open up awesome collaborations and networking opportunities. You’ve heard that people buy from people, so who I hang out with can also put me in spaces where I can meet more potential clients as well as introduce me to people who can help me in my business, broadening my skillset and impact. And the same is true for you. When it comes to unleashing the potential you and I contain, it is equally true: Who we hang out with will influence whether and how we unleash our potential both personally and professionally.

When we are new in business, emerging from our training with our well-earned qualifications as therapists and coaches, we tend to hang with others who are also emerging from visionary cocoons into the reality of the big, wide world. This can be hugely comforting, giving reassurance, sharing tips, walking the same walk, and deep bonds can be forged.

Peer networks can be enlightening, comforting and vibrant homes of collaboration and networking. They can spark new ideas, be places you reach out to for opinions and advice, and they can add so much to your professional and personal life as deep relationships are forged. But they don’t replace personal mentoring, supervision or masterminds. If you’re looking to grow your business successfully, stepping out beyond your peer networks can be a powerful step to unleashing your potential and exposing you to fresh inspiration.

Surround yourself with others who are also actively pursuing unleashing their potential

Broadening your network and seeking specific support elsewhere can be scary, I understand that. In the words of Eleanor Roosevelt, you must do things you think you cannot do. Business energy – and by that I don’t just mean physical energy, I mean the vibe and potential that we release – is something that is defined in us as we learn to step out and create our own business lane, our own path alongside others reaching for the same success that we are.

When I surveyed coaches recently about their experiences of business building, the coaches who reported business growth and satisfaction were more likely to reach out for paid support than those who were frustrated with their business growth.

And this is where who we hang out with becomes important. Success in business is about creating momentum, movement that attracts clients and business activity, and it is found by consciously stepping out and moving alongside others who are creating momentum. As Rachel Wochin says: Surround yourself with people that reflect who you want to be and how you want to feel, energies are contagious.

There are so many moving parts to getting your therapy or coaching consultancy off the ground, and all of them are important to work on. Your mission, your why, your ideal clients, your niche market, learning to grow confident and sell your services. These are all areas of our business we need to dig deep in. Arguably the area of greatest importance is your self-belief, your confidence, that vibe that keeps you going, strong and passionate about the work you do. That same vibe also attracts your clients and others to you, increasing your success and growing your expert status. That’s your energy.

There is something contagious amongst people who unleash their potential, they create an environment of possibility and strategic action.

Whether you’re introvert, ambivert or extrovert doesn’t matter. It’s how you unleash your potential that makes the difference and, of course, having the confidence to do that is the first step. The kind of energy and confidence I’m talking about here to create your business path grows with encouragement, in the presence of others who are also open to growth and who are committed to releasing their potential for success. Not surprisingly then, the greatest secret to success in business is who you surround yourself with and how you respond to them. 

If you spend time with procrastinators, you will be drawn into procrastination. Choose to hang out with legacy builders, and you will begin to think about and take action to create your own legacy. When you invite people into your life who choose to release their potential even when it’s hard and scary, you will grow more confident in releasing yours. Put yourself in a room with others who are working on growing their business and committed to taking targeted action, and you will be energised by that commitment – you will realise your own potential because you are in a room with possibility, and you will no longer want to sit on yours, you’ll want to dust it off and release it.

As motivational speaker Joyce Meyer explains: Potential is a priceless treasure, like gold. All of us have gold hidden within, but we have to dig to get it out.

When you surround yourself with people who empower you to become better, you aspire to up-level. When you surround yourself with people who want to see you win in your business life, you are buoyed by that belief in you and you dig deep to believe in yourself and take action.

Who we hang with has a deep influence on our motivation, our choices and our level of focussed activity. That’s why, you’ll observe that the therapists and coaches you most admire for their business acumen and have built a successful mission-led, transformational consultancy have all reached out beyond peer support and invested in business support. Support they pay for. 

The mind shift you need to unleash your potential 

There’s a moment in your business growth when you no longer see the price of business mentoring and masterminds as something you “pay for” but instead you begin to understand it as something you are “investing in”. In the same way, moving beyond (not necessarily breaking up with) peer support to broaden who you hang out with can be transformational for your business. Again, you’ll find that those therapists and coaches who are building those successful niche consultancies have broadened their circle and invest time in hanging out with and building relationships with other business owners beyond their initial network who are growing at their pace and beyond.

Placing yourself in the company of others who are on fire with their business passion and who position themselves to bring their dream to a reality will place you in an inspiring environment. The energy that is released when you hang out with people who talk possibilities and overcoming challenges brings an atmosphere that encourages you to reach out, to build strategically and to grow too. If you don’t want that kind of energy in your business and you want to just let it grow organically, no problem. But if you want to unleash that potential inside you and take action on growing your business, place yourself amongst people of passion who take action. It doesn’t need to be a big group. What counts is the energy and proaction that helps you unleash your potential.

When we’re feeling low about our business, we feel low about ourselves. If you’re in a rut with that, it can feel intimidating to step into a space with others who are all fired up. There are many mentors like myself who provide programmes, groups or masterminds for people who are just stepping out and choosing to take action on their business. These programmes grow your confidence as you step out and invest by committing to the process of growth that they offer you. Your confidence will grow as you engage. 

For some, this is about finding their business tribe. I don’t see it like that. I think the larger business tribes that have developed can, indeed, be transformational places, but I think it’s more about finding your place to thrive rather than a large tribe. It’s more about finding an environment in which you feel safe to step out and grow, where you can learn, and where that energy or vibe to release your potential for business success is high. This is why joining business mentoring programmes or masterminds is so powerful. There is an intensity of expectation, a high level of energy that encourages you to succeed and there is a nurtured yet powerful releasing of potential. You may not be a tribe at the start, but having grown alongside each other, there is certainly a sense of camaraderie and community that develops by the end of growing through a process together.

Your commitment to business growth alongside others creates an environment in which you can unleash your potential and thrive. These are spaces in which you are encouraged to grow into your dreams and empowered to take action to do just that.

Back then, to my initial statement, if who you and I hang out with counts, then maybe it’s time you took stock of the energy or influence the people you hang out with have on you? Perhaps you’re happy with how things are growing just as they are? Then that’s fantastic. However, if you’re not content and you feel potential and frustration rising up in you, it’s probably time to find more business relationships that spur you on to thrive.

Unleash your potential by finding your place to thrive

If you want more business success, are you hanging out with people who are experiencing success, or do you feel left behind? What do you notice about those who are experiencing success and how they focus? At the end of the day, if you want your business to grow, it’s down to you. Not just the actions you take, it’s also about your internal journey and how that’s affected by the company you keep. 

I’ve noticed, and I’m sure you have too, that just because one person thrives in a particular network or mastermind, doesn’t mean that it’s necessarily going to be right for everyone. Finding the right mentor, mastermind or programme for you is a journey in itself and can be even harder if you’ve had a couple of false starts with this or spent lots of money already but been disappointed. Be encouraged though, there are so many business mentors and communities out there, that there will absolutely be one where you can and will thrive.

Hanging out with others who spur you on to business success can happen in different places and on different levels. Generally though, as with most things in life, you will find that you get the most out of the community or programme you commit to as you invest yourself in it, through interacting and spending time with those people. Whether that’s in a network setting or whether it’s a paid mastermind or programme, you have to take yourself to the table to be able to sit at it with others.

Whilst we’re talking commitment and investment, let’s talk about money too. Does finding those relationships that help you thrive in business need to cost a lot of money? No, it doesn’t, there are some great value large group paid or free options out there.

Return on Investment: Why investing in your personal business development turns potential into success

If you want to walk more closely through a specific process with a mentor facilitating that, then yes, you need to switch your mentality from paying for to investing in. As with coaching and therapy, clients tend to get more value out of their sessions when they invest in paying for them and when the price is right at the upper level of their comfort zone. It’s the same with business mentoring.

You should also remember that your return on investment should be evident in your business success fairly soon. So what you invest should be proportionate and realistic to the stage you are at in business because a step by step approach is usually most effective. If you’re right at the start of your business journey, anyone who charges thousands of dollars or pounds and offers you instant success should make your alarm bells ring. Look instead for a mentor or community that you feel aligned with and consider your participation as an investment, of energy, time and finance where relevant.

In November 2022, I’ll be charging just £750 for my 6month small group, live taught, Consultancy Kickstarter programme, knowing that this is a lot of money for someone with no or few paying clients, but equally, I know that they only need 7 to 10 paying clients or one B2B contract and they have matched the investment in the programme and more. I’ll also be running a mini-mastermind group for coaches and therapists whose businesses are already growing but would like a more focused strategy and to work on establishing their expert status.

Consider that price as an investment with a physical, achievable return and that £750 is truly very reasonable for a programme that sets you up to consistently win clients and build momentum in your business.

You’ll likely have seen masterminds with different mentors costing anything from £1,000 a year to £20,000. Again, these are all proportionate and the cost should reflect both the level of attention, support and input you get from the mentor or coach alongside what stage of growth and success your business is at. Masterminds and programmes are most effective with a niche group of therapists or coaches who are all at a similar business stage when they start together. 

So, when you look for those relationships and programmes that will help you thrive, look at the energy there, look at the values, sense the release of potential and how all of that affects your own energy. Remember that your bravery in stepping out and broadening your circles is an important step to realising and releasing your potential as a business owner. The circles you join should feel healthy for you, push you around the border of your comfort zone and inspire you to unleash and develop all that potential you have within you!

For me personally, I’ve consciously broadened my network very strategically, resulting in some really rewarding new relationships and collaborations. I avoid environments that focus on how hard business growth can be, and instead, I actively seek solutions for myself and my clients. And most exciting of all, I’m creating my own empowering community for therapists and coaches who are looking for that calm and inspiring place where they can learn, be encouraged and mentored to finally grow that dream business they’ve envisioned for so long. The Specialist Studio ignites an excitement about your own success and enables you to believe in yourself. My vibe is a quiet “let’s get on with it” one that grows your confidence as you take action. If you’re looking for more of that in your life, let’s talk.

Get in touch with me today if you’d like to know more about how you can grow a flourishing coaching or therapeutic consultancy. I work with therapists and professionals growing their own specialist consultancy and expert status. You can work with me on my signature programme 1:1 or in groups of up to 6 coaches. I also offer monthly mentoring options. Typically, my clients gain clients whilst still completing the programme along with gaining clarity, confidence and a big satisfied smile on their face!


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Andrea Urquhart

Andrea Urquhart

Business Mentor & Coach for Specialist Coaches

Andrea is a full member of the Association of Business Mentors. With professional experience as a teacher and Positive Psychology Coach, she enables mature therapists and  coaches transitioning from academia or professional backgrounds to establish and grow a flourishing coaching consultancy. 

She’s known for her ability to enable her clients to gain clarity, confidence and clients; growing momentum in their business. 

Andrea is based in West Sussex, UK and works primarily online with clients. Her signature programme, Kickstart Your Coaching Consultancy is for 12 power-packed sessions and available in a small group or 1:1 option.