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Genius can be found in some pretty unlikely places.
In the case of today's blog post, I turned to a well known kid's book called Stone Soup. Kid's books have a lot of advice and guidance that adults can turn into life lessons of success, if they are open minded enough to get the underlying message.
A few years ago, I needed a new perspective on management. I remembered vaguely about this book and ordered it off Amazon.......for a penny. That's right. One of the most powerful books on networking and intellectual asset management costs a penny.
Let that sink in before your stupid HR team drops another 6k on "corporate training" so that you can get yelled at while reading Sun Tzu.
The basic premise of the book is that three monks are visiting a small province in China where the locals have become reclusive and unfriendly. They only care for themselves and although there are many skilled people in the village, they do not collaborate.
The monks see all this and start building a fire. They gather a few stones and start boiling them in water. A small girl sees what they are doing and brings out a larger pot to help. Then a villager surreptitiously creeps out and offers spices. Another comes out and offers carrots. A third offers onions.
|We need Sriracha, STAT|
This continues until all the villagers have come out and contributed. A feast is held. Lanterns are lit. Everyone eats and shares stories. Music is played long into the night. The monks leave with a hero's farewell. They have forever changed the village with their ingenuity and wisdom.
So what can you surmise from this story? Quite a few things, it turns out:
1. Every person is an asset - Every single person you meet knows someone that can use your services, aid you in life, or help you advance. You just have to ask the right questions
2. Aptitude is EVERYWHERE - There are hundreds of talented people out there WAITING for the chance to help you. The beauty of finding one of these specialists? Most of the time they are SO advanced, that they will help you for "love of the game." If you are one of these hyper-developed people, be sure and offer to help others.
3. You can hand pick a team and accomplish AMAZING feats - Don't believe me? I was fired from my day job. On Dec 30th, I started the idea of creating the first magazine devoted to advanced life design. I grabbed my own A-Team of specialists from my Facebook friends, my FB business groups and strangers that had a very high aptitude at a needed skill. In 22 days, our January issue was done. We launch Wednesday the 20th. I could not have done this without those very special 10 people.
4. If you take, YOU MUST GIVE - This is where many of you get things messed up. If you are going to ask someone for their time and help, you NEED to offer something at a 3:1 value of what you are asking. I get people that ask for life coaching advice weekly. The decent thing to do would be to at least offer my regular life coaching fee or a service in barter. Think about it, asking me for something gives you advice from a PhD that has a decade of experience. You get all the benefits, I lose time to work on my own projects. I love helping others but free advice does not pay my rent. Respect my gifts and talents and offer something in return.
5. If you can solve someone's problem for them, DO IT - The monks solved the village's problems with a simple solution. They will now have a lifetime of gratitude for what they did. Imagine if you could do that for someone. It's not that hard. Maybe you know someone that can help them with their website issues. Maybe your cousin Larry is a great mechanic and another friend is having car issues. There are tons of ways to connect people and make their lives easier. Keep your "sixth sense" open, listen for someone's issues and step up.
6. You will find greatness in unlikely places - The old man in Starbucks reading the paper might have fought in Vietnam. The 11 year old that is playing outside your apartment might be able to fix your computer. The shy girl next to you at Chilis that is buried in a book might be an expert at clothing design. Until you talk to these people, you will NEVER know their potential. Remember that. If you bumped into me in a coffee shop, you'd see a big, angry looking dude in a Macho Man Randy Savage t shirt, not a dual CEO and PhD that has been on TV, radio, and podcasts. Appearances ARE deceiving. Get out of your comfort zone and say hi to someone you wouldn't normally talk to. You'll be amazed at what you find.
I hope this has inspired you to rethink the way you view people around you. There is SO MUCH potential for amazing results if you can just adjust your thinking slightly.
If you want your own copy of Stone Soup, here is the link:
|Click HERE to buy|
Until next time, get out there and make some damn soup.