You Get What You Give

What if working to help others also helped you?  Simon Sinek, leadership expert and author believes just that.

In the video embedded above Sinek says:

  • People are looking for a community or culture.  Community is defined as a group of people with a common set of values and beliefs.
  • When you are surrounded by people who believe what you believe, something interesting happens: trust.  Our very survival depends on trust doesn’t it?
  • You find and create communities of like minded individuals by going out and meeting people.
  • Every decision you make is a piece of communication.  This is why you have to say and do things you believe.
  • The things you say and do are symbols of who you are. People look for symbols similar to what they are looking for.
  • Whatever you say and do will attract people with similar behavior, whether intended or not. Say and do what you actually believe.
  • People want to work for companies and work for clients who believe what they believe.  They want to show up and contribute, or feel a part of something bigger than themselves.
  • People use symbols and graphics to say who they are, or what they represent.  We put company logos on us to show we believe in, or we are part of something.  We wear logos and colors to represent who we are.  When people respect your company they will show it in various ways.  When was the last time you saw a dirty Mac?
  • In order to feel truly fulfilled you need to do something good for someone else. Generosity is doing something for someone else and expecting nothing in return.

This is also similar to the idea of the movie Pay it Forward where a teacher challenges his class to change the world and put it into action.

Now let’s discuss what it means to be communicators.  We communicate to express an idea, or a thought.  We communicate to ask a question, or to get a better understanding of the world around us.  As communicators it is our job to help inform, as well as to ask questions.  If our communications are one sided, meaning we are simply doing all the talking and no listening, how engaged are you in the conversation?  If you are asking those who you are communicating with to do something and ask nothing in return, I wonder how likely it is for others to do anything for you.

In the new world of digital media, everyone is a communicator and everyone needs, or wants to be heard. Whether you are communicating via print, web, video, email, voicemail, 1:1 meetings, 1:many meetings, or via phone, we are all communicating to seek knowledge, to ask questions.  We are likely also communicating to seek community so make sure what you are communicating is generating the desired result.  The world is about relationships, connecting with others, and helping others.

So now let me ask you this: How are you going to put this idea into action in your personal and professional lives?

“You make a living by what you get. You make a life by what you give.” – Winston Churchill

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