The economy sucks, people are losing business, spouses are losing jobs, people are hiding their cars from the repo man and others have lost their homes. People are bitter and the Internet is a fast way to lash out at others with a veil of anonymity- this isn’t my theory, it’s based on my studies at the University of Texas that date back to 1999 as sociologists began publishing papers on web behavior.
Put all of these together, and you have a choice as to what business philosophy you want to adopt for your survival, like these:
- The common “it’s a dog eat dog world” mentality that keeps you strong and on top of your game.
- “People say I am ruthless. I am not ruthless. And if I find the man who is calling me ruthless, I shall destroy him,” Robert Kennedy. I have to admit that during my school days, I was extremely competitive (some would even say mean) as I fought my way to the top. I can certainly relate to this philosophy.
- “A real diplomat is one who can cut his neighbor’s throat without having his neighbor notice it,” Trygve Lie. Many negotiators live this out every day- there’s nothing like outwitting someone with a smile on your face, we see it every day in real estate.
- “If any of my competitors were drowning, I’d stick a hose in their mouth,” Ray Kroc. Ray was a business genius, so many many people have adopted his business theories, there are even courses in colleges across the nation devoted to his brilliance.
Of the above, which business philosophy do you choose to operate your days with in this tough economy? If none of those, maybe a fifth option fits you best…
The philosophy I go by
A lot has changed in life over the years- we lost a son, a brother and I almost lost my husband to a heart attack. The above quotes all seem so harsh for such a short life. I want to have those attitudes and be tough, but it’s just not me and it hasn’t been since the day I met my husband.
I’m a kinder, gentler, more workhorse type now and only one person has summed it up the way I feel about it… we were watching the final night of Conan O’Brian’s show and he said, “Nobody in life gets exactly what they thought they were going to get. But if you work really hard and you’re kind, amazing things will happen.” This has stuck with me and many of you have heard me tell you that it perfectly captures my personal AND business philosophy which is why I don’t choose to spill blood- that’s a temporary fix… rather, I choose to stay the course and to be kind to people and whether I win the lottery (which I don’t play) or not, good things WILL happen.
When Benn and I were talking about this article, he reminded me of a similar philosophy that he has been living by for several years now from the very wise Jeff Brown who told Benn, “always leave ’em smiling.” In business, the best tactic is to always leave them smiling- there’s no need to overreact, there’s no need to lash out… what you are thinking and emoting is your own personal business.
If you support one of the other philosophies above, I most certainly don’t find fault in that as each person’s life is different and I’m not in any position to judge as at some point in life, I have shared those sentiments. But as life has unfolded for us, I think Conan has the right idea.
Tell us in comments what your favorite quote is that keeps you on your professional path!