Yesterday, I received an email from one of our clients that included this:
"Keeping busy doing things that are not the most exciting, but necessary to understand. Therefore, I am taking it as a learning experience."
At first glance, the comment may seem mundane. It’s anything but.
Dale Carnegie once said:
"It isn’t what you have or who you are or where you are or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about it."
Attitude has always been a key focus of our work. Our client’s attitude is in the right place. Here’s why:
Use These Two Secrets
When Carnegie published his blockbuster bestselling book How to Win Friends and Influence People, he unlocked these two secrets of successful people:
They have a worldview that people and relationships are critical to success.
They work with and through people to generate positive results.
Both take time. Both are hard. Both require skills most of us didn’t get in school. (That’s why most people and organizations accept mediocrity in both areas.)
Why It’s Hard
Building relationships means you need to become genuinely interested in other people. That means it’s more about them and less about you.
Often, you don’t get to talk to people about the things you want to talk about. You may need to look at things from a perspective you don’t always agree with.
You start from where they are, not you.
That’s often not exciting, but it’s fully necessary to build relationships.
The best leaders, business people, and engineers are rarely those with the highest IQ. They are the ones who are willing to do not what is most exciting, but necessary to understand in order to influence people.
Test It Yourself
Think about the most successful person you know. What are the qualities that make them successful?
Answer the question above. Once you have, read on…
When we’ve asked that question to thousands of professionals, the answers are remarkably consistent:
They have a great attitude.
They get along well with people.
They communicate clearly.
They approach interactions with confidence.
They are optimistic about the future.
Chances are, you answered a similar way. The person you know who’s successful recognizes the importance of people and influencing them.
Because of her note and many past interactions, I have every confidence our client is the kind of person willing to put in the work to maximize these secrets.
That work may be uninteresting, often intense, and still completely necessary in order to build relationships and affect positive change.