When you are starting and growing your photography business, you quickly realize you can’t do it alone. With all the different types of tasks that enter your life, it soon becomes apparent that its easier to have people you trust to help you along the way.

Yet some people that are around you that you may be relying on for answers may not be the right people for the job. In fact, some people will help you kill your business much quicker than you can build it up. See if any of these people are currently in your lives and “helping” you build your business.

Raving Fans

These are usually the people you are closest to and support your every endeavor. They think your amazing, incredible, and you can do no wrong.

While it may be nice to hear great things along the way, unconditional praise is anything but helpful. We make mistakes. We get things wrong. And when we do, its important to have people that can step up to the plate and let you know what they really think.

Egomaniacs

While its important to keep the never-ending praise at bay, the opposite end of the spectrum isn’t healthy either. This type of person thinks they can do no wrong, and will fill you up with their great advice. Even though they’ve never started a business themselves or have any experience in running a business, they will be the first to tell you how to do it and what you’re doing wrong.

Roadblockers

Did you know the economy is bad? Did you know you can’t succeed at small business in a bad economy? Did you know you need the “right” president to build a successful company? Or how about the fact that the world is ending soon and you should be focusing in on other things?

Yep, with a roadblocker in your life, the world is a never-ending supply of problems just lying in your path and waiting for you. The problem is most roadblocks are minor at best, and are usually something you can easily work around. Instead of focusing in on how to get around a problem, they give you the nitty gritty details of the problem over and over again. Simply nod and move on when you get this unfriendly advice.

The Needy

Have you ever sat through a meeting and wondered why you were there? Do you know people that call meetings all the time, only to sit around and talk about nothing for hours at a time? Or maybe they send an email, follow up with a phone call to make sure you got the email, and ask for a meeting to discuss the email/phone call?

These people need hand holding – A LOT of hand holding. The problem is if you are holding their hands through minor projects, you have little time left to focus in on your own needs and desires. Finish what you are doing with a “needy” person, and focus on ways to lessen the amount of time you spend with them during your core business hours.

Zombies

Some people have zero motivation, pride, plans or goals. They simply drift along in life from one thing to the next. Nothing motivates them. Nothing distresses them. They simply exist and do the task in front of them as they are told.

If people in your immediate area of influence have zombie-like qualities, they will do little to “light the fire” underneath you and make you push yourself to do all you can do. They won’t kill you. But they will kill your motivation, and cause you to decrease the amount of things you actually attempt and accomplish within your business.

Chances are you see some of your family, friends, and acquaintances in the above characteristics. In some cases you can simply choose to not spend as much time with them. Blame it on spending more time on your business. Do whatever it takes to put space between you and them.

But what if it isn’t that simple? What if you have to see them every day because they are a daily part of your life?

In that case, choose to separate your personal life from your business life. Choose to not speak about your business issues when you spend time together. Find other things to talk about and consciously make the effort to stop talking about business around this person.

Then find a new mentor of influencer to rely on instead. It can come in the form of a business coach or an advisory group with people in similar circumstance. The additional advice will quickly put you on the path to success.

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