Outta my way!

Simple success

  • I like to think of myself as getting smarter each day, but as this grand intelligence amasses in my head, I find that success usually comes from keeping things simple
  • Successful people simply do things well (and don’t often complicate things)
    • Mother Teresa impacted and influenced many others with her straightforward approach of providing amazing compassion for the ill and dying
    • Richard Branson’s Virgin Group has become very successful by simply focusing on an improved customer experience with their products and services
  • Whether professionally or personally, many truly successful people become leaders because they treat others with respect, look for the positive in people, and simply listen


No no, let’s talk about you

  • I took the Dale Carnegie Course (the flagship course of the Dale Carnegie Training organization) in 2004
    • Dale Carnegie wrote the famous book “How to Win Friends and Influence People” which was a New York Times bestseller for 10 years
      • The book takes a somewhat different approach to self-improvement with a focus on pleasing others rather than focusing on one’s self
    • I loved the course because it is full of simple yet powerful principles on how to not only be a better person, but also how to be a better leader (professionally and personally)
    • His first principle is: Don’t criticize, condemn, or complain.
      • Quite simple at first glance, but one I’m still working to perfect
    • A couple of his leadership principles are: Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to, and Ask questions instead of giving orders.
      • Again simple (and often a contrary approach to leadership today), yet effective through the empowerment of others
    • One of my favorite principles is: Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
      • I love this principle because it is so utterly simple but true, and yet superbly powerful since it immediately garners respect

  • I belong to a BNI chapter (BNI Sterling) here in Vancouver
    • BNI started in California over 20 years ago and has created a very successful recipe for word-of-mouth referral marketing
    • The BNI philosophy is ‘givers gain’ which is closely linked to the idea of ‘what goes around comes around’
    • Within BNI, the more that you refer business to your fellow chapter members, the more they will refer business to you
      • A nice concept, especially given the fact that the focus comes off of you and shifts to the promotion and encouragement of others


Practically speaking

  • So in keeping with the theme of simplicity, my practical suggestion here is very simple to both do and repeat (The easier the action is to perform and repeat, the more likely you’ll actually do it, and not complain about being too tired or too busy)
  • And always make sure your goals are of the smart variety as they become considerably more effective
    • S.M.A.R.T. goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely)
  • So here’s my suggested goal:
    • Go out of your way once a day to:
      • Compliment (someone’s new haircut)
      • Appreciate (the work of the cleaning staff in your office)
      • Honor (your parents for your wonderful upbringing)
      • Sing praises (of your daughter’s piano playing)
      • Acknowledge (the great work of a colleague)
      • Love (your best friend)
      • Smile (at an unsmiling person at the train station)
  • Do this once a day and it will quickly become a habit and you’ll become known as a lavisher of praise
    • And the ripple effect (which I often go on about) will ultimately have you positively impacting hundreds, if not thousands, of people around you (You may be amazed at how smiling at a stranger can brighten someone’s day)
    • So what is the cost for all this fantasticly positive impact you might ask
      • Well it can be as little as 10 seconds a day (It doesn’t take a lot of time to compliment someone)
        • And 10 seconds a day works out to a mere 60 minutes for a full year
        • A very tiny commitment given that there are 525,600 minutes in a year
  • So, get outta your own way and start impacting thousands of people by committing to 10 seconds of positivity a day
  • Could it be any simpler?

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