One of my favorite ideas from Julie Winkle Giulioni and Beverly Kaye’s new book, Help Them Grow or Watch Them Go, is the idea that career development belongs to a village. Although a manager or supervisor plays an important role in helping an employee develop, it takes a wider community of people supporting, caring for, and providing feedback to someone to help them grow. And, any individual is ultimately responsible for their own growth.

This comforts me! I love that the individual members of a team can challenge and stretch each other, can teach and share valuable to feedback with one another. We can learn from each other; we can learn from our clients; we can learn from people outside of our work life: our friends, partners, neighbors, our children (!).

I needed a village yesterday. A careless mistake left me feeling really frustrated and discouraged with myself. The mistakes served as a major trigger for me to realize that I need to slow down. After a series of conversations with team members, a client, my coach, and a close friend, I had more insight into the events that led to the mistake. I had a plan of how to prevent a similar mistake in the future, and I felt hopeful that I have the support I need as I move forward.

It takes a village. For me, this is a pressure-releasing statement. The only person whose development I am completely responsible for is my own. I can make a difference for others, asking questions and creating opportunities to help them grow and develop their careers. And, there will be a host of other players involved in the process.

For practical ideas about how to help others grow, and great insights about your own growth and development, I encourage you to buy a copy (or three) of Julie Winkle Giulioni and Beverly Kaye’s new book, Help Them Grow or Watch Them Go: Career Conversations Employees Want.