NYU Professor, Scott Galloway, who I quote often b/c of his exceptional success in business, tweeted this:
“People think of it as strong alpha males who deserve to win. That’s not what Darwin suggested, or what has been demonstrated. The most successful strategy in life is friendliness and cooperation, and we see it again and again.”
In other words, it is rarely hard work alone that drives success; friendship and connections will take you much farther.
I personally am both highly disciplined and introverted, so I love to put my nose to the grindstone and just work – and that probably holds me back more than anything else.
In my blog about Super Agent Michael Ovitz, I mentioned how so much of his success derived solely from his amazing skills at connecting with people (by helping them, spending time with them, and by sharing valuable info).
More recently, I had the pleasure of attending a private discussion with Atlanta Hawks owner (and extremely successful entrepreneur and author) Jesse Itzler.
He attributes his amazing success to his ability to connect with people and to get them to “root” for his success; he jokes that he had to cultivate this skill b/c he only got a 980 (a very low score) on his SAT.
Itzler says everyone needs to do three things sincerely to win favor: (1) compliment; (2) congratulate; and (3) console.
He constantly and consistently sends handwritten notes and texts doing all three.
At that same talk, our business coach repeated his favorite axiom: “The loan officer or agent with the most friends wins.”
I was surrounded by numerous extremely successful loan officers and business owners, and what struck me was the fact that they would have been extraordinarily successful no matter what field they were in.
The reason was simply b/c they were so friendly, gregarious, giving, and charismatic. Everyone wants to be their friends.
And lastly – many of JVM’s best ideas and insights come from competitors in our industry, who are also our friends.
They frequently share invaluable info with us, so we naturally share similar info with them – and it works fabulously well.
(I resisted taking the time to develop these relationships for years too, and it was very costly for both me and JVM)
Our Business Development Officers work similarly, as they often compete very aggressively to put up the best numbers while at the same time sharing best practices with each other.
They too understand the value of friendship and cooperation.
Anyway – all of this is just a huge reminder to go out and make more friends if you want to be more successful.
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