Build a Personal Board of Directors

“You become like the five people you spend the most time with. Choose carefully.”
— Jim Rohn

“Show me your friends and I’ll show you your future.”
— Mark Ambrose

“You need to associate with people that inspire you, people that challenge you to rise higher, people that make you better. Don’t waste your valuable time with people that are not adding to your growth. Your destiny is too important.”
— Joel Osteen

In the past, hearing quotes like this was limited to thinking of friend and family circles – weighing who might be the more “draining” of the bunch. Now, this is not necessarily an unhelpful mental activity to do for your life. After all, setting boundaries is healthy. But this is not the focus of this lesson.

There is another way to enrich who surrounds your life. One that I learned from a call with Bob and that is to build a personal board of directors for your life.

Build a personal board.

As a former non-profit teammate, I remember how much time and energy my leadership team put into choosing individuals for our board at the time. Bios and more bios were reviewed. Meetings and more meetings were had. And then there was voting…

In other words, the selection process was done very thoughtfully and carefully. Not just anyone could sling around advice to us, no sir.

Imagine if we put the same amount of care into deciding who gains special access to our fears, thoughts, accountability, questions. What a thing to celebrate.

Now, these types of relationships do not find us overnight, but if we are not aware of relational gaps, we will remain too busy to see them.


  • Spend 15 minutes listing people you consider safe-sounding boards in your life. Now, take a moment to ask the following questions:
  • Is an age range represented? Who could fill in a younger role, and/or a more senior role?
  • Is a range of backgrounds represented?
  • Do I have a ‘yoda’ figure in my life? Who comes to mind that could fill that space?
  • Who on this list helps me stay accountable to my personal goals? If no one does yet, create a space.
  • Who on this list helps me stay accountable to my professional goals? If no one does yet, create a space.

By reflecting on the relationships we desire in life… we create space for them and notice when the opportunity comes knocking.

Get ready to grow.

Jayme Markus
(aka the voice of The Doug Den)

Lead Designer and Founder of Pageless Studio
Illustration of Doug the Cat

The Doug Den Takeaway

What is one next step you can take to bring you closer to one of those relationships?

Get ready to grow,

Jayme Markus often has two little eyes peering over her shoulder during Zoom calls. It is her cat Doug. As a way for Markus to share her leadership lessons gained from Four Loop Learning, Doug is kindly here to help summarize them. Hence, The Doug Den is here.