13 has always been a lucky number for me. I was born on April 13 and my first football jersey number at Sherwood Junior High in Memphis Tennessee was #13. This month Delta Point, Inc. is celebrating its 13th year anniversary as a company. It hardly seems possible that it’s been 13 years since my wife Maryann and I started this business out of our home office.
My friend Mark was rereading my book The Relationship Edge in Business when he dropped it. As he reached to pick it up, it opened to the copyright page—and that’s when he happened to notice that it was published in 2004. Recognizing that this meant it was the 10th anniversary of its publication prompted him to contact me. That serendipitous event served as an impetus for me to reflect about why I felt the need to write this bestselling book in the first place.
I recently had lunch with a friend of mine who was bemoaning the fact that he was not doing better at work. He’s a sales manager for a large company and is ranked about the middle of 60 managers at his level. He actually said, “I don’t know what to do. I’m doing everything that I can think of.” That’s when I asked him the question, “Are you really doing everything you can to be successful?”
Building business relationships is not an item that appears on most people’s to-do list. But perhaps it should be. While some might struggle with how to justify taking time away from “work” to devote their effort to building relationships, there are some plausible reasons to do so. Perhaps the best reason is that you can’t get your job done effectively without them.
I’m a big believer in lifelong learning. That’s one of the reasons why I subscribe to blogs and email updates from people I respect. One of these is Valerie Sokolosky, who sent an interesting email about self-awareness that got me thinking. Valerie’s article stressed that leaders need to be self-aware. My contention is that being self-aware shouldn’t pertain to just leaders. Every person who strives to excel needs to be self-aware and nowhere is this more important than in selling.
I was quite surprised when my friend Buzz Williams shared Warren Buffett’s formula for success. (Actually he called it the Buffett formula of how to get smarter.) As a reader of many self-help books and a constant seeker of the latest ideas shared by thought leaders, I find that many of the suggestions about how to be successful are basically the same. And it’s not that Buffett’s idea is so different—it’s that his formula is rather unique.
Last week’s blog was a milestone—it was my 200th blog. Unfortunately though, that blog about small changes that can propel you from good to great contained a small error. Even though it was minor, its significance has propelled me to write this follow up blog.
Obstacles are necessary for success. We may not like it but we do learn best from our failures. Or so the philosophers tell us. But how do we know when enough is enough and stop trying?