If you want something – Give it to others!

This post says something that is either profound, obvious or possibly wrong 🙂 . It’s a thought I just had and it makes sense to me – so I thought I would share it!

In life we learn that the best way to achieve something is to go grab it! If you want another slice of pizza – go get it! You want a job – apply for it! A book looks interesting – go read it. All of this works well when you are interacting with the inanimate world, when you are following the rules of commerce, etc.

When you are interacting with people it often works the opposite way. When you want love – you give love. If you want compassion – be compassionate toward others. In business you are trying to create value – the way to do that is to create value for others!

This isn’t the only way to do business, but it is the way that focuses on your counterpoint rather than just yourself.

Our company has a service provider who wants us to pay more for the services he provides. Instead of focusing on the great value he is giving us – he spends his time explaining to us how he’s not making enough money. As much as I want him to make a good living – my primary concern is that I get value from him. When he spends all of his time explaining what he’s not getting – I wonder aloud why don’t you tell me how you are going all out for me and my team. If I feel you are of course I will want to make sure you are compensated well!

As Five Blocks has matured we have learned that the best way to get is to give. and not in a tit for tat way. We spend lots of time with potential clients and old partners – helping them with digital advice, pinch-hitting issues that arise in the online profiles of their company or their clients’ companies. We do audits and fixes for nothing. And it’s smart. It rarely turns into a paid engagement. But we have built something more important – a relationship based on kindness, trust and proving value. And that ultimately leads us to be a better company and grow our business!

So my advice is if you want to succeed – help others succeed. And think bigger than this month or even this year. Make sure you are playing this game of life with the long-term in mind!

A Lesson from the Mighty Zambezi River

This summer we had the opportunity to travel to Zimbabwe (by way of Zambia) and spend a few days in Victoria Falls with 7/8 of our children. The falls are incredible – with seemingly endless amounts of water!

Interestingly, being on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe, each country owns part of the falls. Zambia owns 75% while Zimbabwe only owns 25%.

This would seem to be an advantage for Zambia – owning 3X as much as their neighbor…

But it’s actually not. Because to enjoy the falls you need to gaze across and see them! So Zimbabwe is actually more fortunate – able to see 3X as much of the falls as Zambia.

I have often found that the best way to appreciate a delicious chocolate bar is to share it with someone else – and I am certain that I get more enjoyment from their loving it than I would if I ate it all myself!