I love learning new things and new skills and am grateful when someone takes the time to share their skills with others. I had the privilege recently to listen to a John Maxwell-certified coach, Lesley King, speak about John’s book, “25 Ways to Win With People.” One of the Busey lenders in our office, Joni Utnage, invited Lesley and also served pizza to anyone who wanted to attend! I would love to share with you some of the things that I was reminded of. I can’t say that any of this material is new to anyone, but do we really know it if we do not put it into practice and implement it into our lives?
Once you discover your missions and purpose, life gets easier. You can’t get away from people, because you’re a person. 🙂 Anyone can win with people; these are learn-able skills. It’s crucial to apply the skills that you learn.
Only 3 of the ways were shared with the group, and I’ll go through each one. Basically, everything Lesley said was meant to be a poignant truth, and I quoted her as best as I could:
- Start with yourself – You have to like yourself. It’s really true. “Your relationships can only be as healthy as you are.” – Neil Clark Warren
You have to see that you have something to offer. You can’t be happy unless you’re healthy. Emotional health is at the center of winning with people. Emotionally-sick people talk about themselves. You have to be emotionally sound. You cannot give what you do not have. The more solid you are about your strengths and weaknesses, the better you can .
“Be yourself, because everyone else is taken.” – Oscar Wilde
You cannot enjoy others unless you enjoy yourself. Self-acceptance is the most important thing in winning with people. Don’t spend a ton of time on your weaknesses, since you’ll likely have those the rest of your life. Get better at your strengths. Finally, live a life of gratitude. If you do not, you are likely a pretty negative person. Through the hard times, you become better or bitter.
Slow down – Life has a lot of simple things that we can enjoy, but if we move too fast, we’ll overlook them. When Lesley said this, I thought of the many times I drive to the office. It’s amazing how much richness and variety I notice when I go for a walk along the exact same route: the flowering bushes at one house, the cat looking out the window at another, the paving bricks recently laid ever further; so many reasons to smile!
The most important thing in life are people. Good always comes out from something bad that happens… if we are looking for it. Lesley shared her story of getting hit by a semi-truck at 27 years old, in a head-on collision. She remembered praying to God, “if you let me walk again and my teeth are all in place (she joked about her priorities at the time), I will declare your goodness.” And this is what she is doing.
Write down your birth year on a sheet of paper, with a hyphen after it. – What impact is your hyphen making on people (family, relationships, colleagues)? We forget to slow down and make an impact. Maximize who you are by overcoming or fixing those things that are in your power to change.
Leaders are constantly learning.
- Practice the 30-second rule – “He who waits to do a great deal of good at once will never do anything.” – Samuel Johnson.
The first 30 seconds of a conversations says something encouraging to someone. Make it all about them. Lesley always thought that if you find something to connect with, then you’ll establish rapport with them. But they didn’t invite you to their story. The 30-second rule is about giving people the “AAA” treatment.
All people feel better and do better when you give them the AAA treatment: 1) Attention: make others feel valuable. Others have worth and have value. When you strip everything away, the heart is all that’s left; that’s what you need to reach. Accept people even though they’re different. 2) Affirmation: every human being wants to be affirmed. Even though this is simplistic, how are you actually applying this in your everyday life? 3) Appreciation: let people know you appreciate them! If you are not the recipient of AAA treatment, you will retreat from that person.
- Pass the credit on to others – If you can grasp the principle that “It’s not about you”, you will be the most fulfilled, satisfied, and full-of-joy person. Servant leadership is key. Passing the credit to others is one of the easiest ways to win with people. People don’t do this because they think it will lessen their own value, but it has the opposite effect. The more you give unselfishly, the greater the return to your life. You will go right up the ladder. Many people are so insecure that they constantly feed their egos to make up for it. To win with people, you must set aside your ego at the door and give credit to people.
“An egotist is not a person who thinks too much of himself; it’s someone who thinks too little of other people.” – Wayne Wong
“I don’t know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know: the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought and found how to serve.” – Albert Schweizer.
Focusing on others will give you a purpose. Focusing on others will give you energy. When you give of yourself, something good goes off inside of you.
“It is literally true that you can succeed best and quickest by helping others to succeed.” – Napoleon Hill
I think that if I can be proficient at just these 3 (of 25) ways, this will already improve my relationships with people. I love people; I just need to SHOW them that I do. 🙂