I came across this great terminology for a philosophy that I deeply believe in for business.  It’s called being a  “Go-giver” instead of a “Go-getter”.    See this link for a great little book on this topic.  http://www.thegogiver.com/       The main idea is to put other’s interests first,  and focus on adding value for others, instead of focusing primarily on what we want to achieve in a business situation.    The results speak for themselves, whether we are talking about sales,  leadership effectiveness or personal success.    People will be drawn to people who they think care about their interests.   With my clients, we talk about “Learning Conversations”  where you ask curious questions to find out what is on the other person’s mind and then you listen effectively and make sure that you understand.  Only at that point can you reasonably offer some ideas for them to consider.  The key part of this is your mindset – a mindset of wanting to bring value.  To do this, you first have to understand what value is for that person.   This is a big departure from the traditional model of being all-knowing as a key competency.  There is still a real difficulty in embracing this philosophy in many situations where they have been trained to know the answers, not to ask others for their thoughts.  This can foster an enviornment of trying to put forward the most clever answer; therefore, everyone is thinking ahead of what their clever answer will be instead of listening to and making sure that they understand someone else’s thoughts and what value means to them.   It can be particularly problematic in classic sales situations, but it is important to any situation where we are dealing with clients, internally or externally.     Next time you feel offended by someone’s approach, notice whether you felt that they really cared about what you wanted or not.   

Maria

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