How your squad can help you get to the top
There is no denying that Taylor Swift is killing it at work. She’s had hit after hit, her social media is on point, and she seems to know exactly who to choose as her collaborators. And while they’re not official business partners, her girl squad is a major asset as she makes her way to the top (or stays there, as the case may be).
Pick the right friends (and I don’t mean supermodels) and your own squad can help you be the best you, at work and play. Added bonus? You get to take over the world together.
Find the right people
Taylor Swift is incredibly conscious about who she brings into her circle.
I surround myself with smart, beautiful, passionate, driven, ambitious women. Other women who are killing it should motivate you, thrill you, challenge you and inspire you…
If you really want to take your career to the next level, find the people who are doing amazing work, and make a connection. Jim Rohn said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” Spend time with people who are smart, beautiful, passionate, driven and ambitious, and you should find yourself embodying more of the same.
If you’re super driven, but you hang out with slackers, it’s worth adding to your friend group. I’m not saying abandon your longtime friends, but do make an effort to build a network of people who inspire you. Where do you find these people? Start by checking out who in your field is active and sharing amazing content on social media, and start engaging with them there. Whether or not they’re local, it is entirely possible to turn online banter into a meaningful friendship.
You can even let people in your circle know you’re looking for someone to hold you accountable as you move forward in your career, and that you can do the same for them. Whether it’s just two of you emailing goals and inspirational quotes back and forth, or a group that meets regularly to focus on professional development, it’s a start.
Focus on building up, not tearing down
I don’t know what it is, but so much of the time, when colleagues get together (or even friends who don’t work together), it turns into a gripe and/or gossip session. This can feel sort of satisfying on the one hand, but it can also be completely depleting, and definitely not helpful in moving forward. Rather than letting all of your get-togethers devolve into complaining, set aside time for the opposite: share your triumphs, and spend time talking about your goals and how you’re working towards them.
So often we’re blind to our own strengths, and your friends can also be an amazing source of insight into what makes you awesome. Especially if you’re feeling nervous about a job interview, or scared about trying to negotiate the salary you deserve, your friends can spot the things you need to know and give you a boost going into those situations. Do the same for them!
Promote, promote, promote
Once you’re feeling high off of all the nice (and true) things you’ve said to one another, go tell the world. While hustling for yourself is great, if you join forces with friends, you can have an even bigger impact. Ideally your squad will have a diverse set of talents in the mix; great business minds mingling with creative types, someone who can negotiate without fear, someone who can write the perfect press release, and someone who can coordinate it all. When anyone you know needs one of these roles filled – tadah! You know the perfect person.
Take your love to the airwaves, too. And by airwaves, I mean Twitter, Instagram, and so on. When someone in your friend group accomplishes something, be sure to sing their praises wherever you can. There’s a reason Taylor and her friends are all over one another’s social media: when one person gets a boost (whether it’s a new job or a new follower), everyone else benefits.
It doesn’t matter that you’re (probably) not aiming for pop stardom – take a lesson from Taylor Swift and her squad and you’ll be sharing Instagram photos from a private yacht in no time. Or at least building a career that looks a lot brighter than if you were trying to do it alone.