Today we often hear that you know you’re doing something right when you’ve pissed someone off, but sometimes we’re fortunate enough that the world reassures us in a more straightforward way. Recently as both my wife’s and my careers took a sudden change in direction, we were overwhelmed by the support in our networks and the business community in general.

It can be hard to know if you’re making a difference, especially if you’re immersed in the grind every day and don’t often come up for air. People may not always comment to your blog or Facebook posts, for example, but that doesn’t mean you’re not out there or that no one’s watching. It’s been a wonderful experience amid such a jarring change of pace.

The first things that come to mind when I think about what I take from this are a bunch of platitudes. Because I’m allergic to throwing those around I’ll spare you, but it reaffirms for me something I’d already been preaching, which is the value of people. Software and gadgets are nice, and certainly technology enriches our lives and how we do business every day, but these are no substitution for a great group of people.

This is true in business as well. If I’ve learned anything from the last couple years it’s the importance — the absolute necessity — of surrounding yourself with good people. And while I’m all about quality over quantity, there’s also no substitute for quantity when that’s what it takes.