Today was one of those days. People screaming, People pissed at one another , not talking to each others, and people whom you want to help grow but they do not want to grow. It is all business, nothing personal, and it is all about serving the clients.
People have different opinions, and they want to get things done, right now, right here, they want to assert their dominance , and it has to be their own way or the highway! In all fairness things have never been this way, this is not part of the culture but once in a while such clashes happen.
Call me different, ignorant , foolish, call me whatever you want to call me but I don’t think it is going to work this way. I don’t think great teams, great companies, great nations are built and run this way.
A wise (maybe not so wise after all) person has taught me this. If you want smart people to work “for” you, don’t think of them or treat them as working for you, they are working WITH you. Unfortunately this person did not practice what he preached and he ended up in the cold, alone, betrayed, and in a world of hurt.
Keep one thing in mind: People and Nations alike rise and fall. He who is your employee today might be your boss tomorrow and believe me the world is a very small place.
Take it a bit further. I think a leader works for his people. He needs to be there for them; personally , professionally, he needs to be their friend, their advisor, he needs to help them grow. As the not so wise person (I still think he is wise) you want to grow, help your people grow. I have seen this in action, and it really works!!!
Taken to the extreme. I really think you have to do this with everyone around you not just people whom you lead or follow or your clients. Be nice and go out of your way to help every single person you interact with, whether it is someone you meet on the street, someone you get introduced to, or even an “Annoying” cold caller on the phone.
This practice is amazing as it :
1- Keeps your Ego in check:
In love, friendship, and leadership there is no Ego , and when you think and believe that you are serving people, your ego stays in check. Let your Ego do the leading, talking , acting and you will fail.
2- Makes people trust you, love you ,and open up to you :
As a consequence of being nice to people and trying to help them people will trust you, love you and open up to you. They will tell you things, they will give you feedback that otherwise they would have been intimidated to give or would not care to give. They will also go out of their way to help you. They will also buy into your vision. Screw people and they will go out of their way to screw you!
3- Helps you see things you have never seen, and helps you listen:
Everyone has weaknesses, blind spots, things he has never seen or heard. Once your Ego is in check, and once people talk to you , you will actually listen. And when you listen you will hear things , learn things, see things and all of this will help you become a better leader, plug your leaks, and grow.
4- Creates your safety net:
Helping, Listening, loving and trusting will help you create and nurture relationships with people and these relationships will help you personally and professionally. Close more sales for you, land you jobs, give you friends and listening ears when you need them most. Create your safety net because you will need it when you fall and believe me you will.
5- Helps you grow spiritually:
Karma , Positive Energy, call it whatever you want to call it , but being nice nourishes your soul. Helps you be a better person and makes you feel better. It also makes the world a better place.
Does this mean all people will want your help? does this mean all the people will help you ? and does this mean those people who you help will not stab you in the back? and no one will fail you?
Not necessarily; After all people are people, they are unpredictable, random, moody, they love you today and they hate you tomorrow.
What you can do is :
1- Be honest and communicate:
If someone failed you , hurt you, be honest to them , tell them what you think, maybe they are having a bad day, or maybe someone died, or maybe, … Talking and honesty help.
2- Give second chances:
To those who deserve it..
3- Throw them out of your circle :
If someone failed you and keeps failing you, simply throw them out of your trust circle and leave them alone. If they ask for your help , help them but make sure you are not being set up.
4- Don’t be foolish.
Be loved but be feared. and if you cannot be both then it is better to be feared.
Leaving you with a quote from a very wise man (Niccolò Machiavelli)
“whether it be better to be loved than feared or feared than loved? It may be answered that one should wish to be both, but, because it is difficult to unite them in one person, is much safer to be feared than loved, when, of the two, either must be dispensed with. Because this is to be asserted in general of men, that they are ungrateful, fickle, false, cowardly, covetous, and as long as you succeed they are yours entirely; they will offer you their blood, property, life and children, as is said above, when the need is far distant; but when it approaches they turn against you. And that prince who, relying entirely on their promises, has neglected other precautions, is ruined; because friendships that are obtained by payments, and not by greatness or nobility of mind, may indeed be earned, but they are not secured, and in time of need cannot be relied upon; and men have less scruple in offending one who is beloved than one who is feared, for love is preserved by the link of obligation which, owing to the baseness of men, is broken at every opportunity for their advantage; but fear preserves you by a dread of punishment which never fails”