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Why you really need the power of others

By Michelle Post

I recently celebrated one of my students as she received her doctorate degree, and after the ceremony, I reflected on my own doctoral journey. I realized the importance of the power of others. I could not and did not complete my doctoral journey alone. I needed the power of others. I believe in the African proverb, “It takes a village to raise a child.” And this, too, is the same lesson I am learning in building my business. I cannot do it without others.

What is the power of others? The power of others are individuals that surround us in our daily lives, online and offline. It may be family and friends, business associates, or the groups we are a part of. Because of the internet, our power of others has increased exponentially and we have the power to meet people all over the world.

Why is the power of others necessary? Because it is from the power of others that we are able to “stand on the shoulders of giants.” We need others; however, we also have the power to decide who we surround ourselves with. In his book “The Power of the Other,” Dr. Henry Cloud writes, “You don’t have a choice about whether or not others have power in your life. They do. But you do have a choice as to what kind of power others are going to have.”

How do you identify the power of others? A good exercise to do is take a piece of paper and draw two lines to make three columns. In the first column add the heading “personal,” in the second column add the heading “business,” and in the third column add the heading “communities.” Under each column make a list of others in groups for both online and offline (see example above right). It becomes apparent quickly that no one is alone. The power of others surrounds us everywhere. Realize their significance in your life and reach out and let them know how important they are to you. Who are your others?



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