This is the last article of a five-part series where I provide suggestions that you can start adopting right away to promote excellence within and outside your organization. If you missed any of the previous ones, please click here.
I will continue to build on the content from “The Go-Giver” book series written by Bob Burg and John David Mann, as well as my nearly four decades of international corporate experience, first as an executive and now as a coach.
Today, we will cover the fifth principle, The Law of Receptivity: The key to effective giving is to stay open to receiving.
Giving and receiving are two sides of the same coin. They work best in tandem. It’s like breathing out and breathing in, like exhaling and inhaling. They work together. Giving is possible because there is somebody else who will receive. If you don’t allow yourself to receive, you stop the flow. Giving earns you the right, not the entitlement, to receive.
Initially, I had some reservations about this law, perhaps tied to negative experiences with “Give-to-Get” practices. Time has proved me wrong.
As part of my executive coaching practice, at the beginning of each engagement, I regularly include an exercise called 360 feedback. It is a process where the coach gathers feedback on the executive from bosses, peers, and direct reports. In one case, the executive was a CEO of a joint venture. He reported to a board with representatives of the two shareholder groups. I had phone calls with most of the board members.
Something interesting—and out of left field—happened in one of these calls. It was with the senior member of one of the shareholders, whom I did not know before the call. After giving me his feedback on the CEO, he asked me questions about my coaching practice and experience. Several months later, and within a few days apart, this group referred me to two executives from different companies. Of course, I gladly accepted the referrals and thanked them for their generosity.
The Law of Receptivity and its complementary Law of Left Field (the greatest gifts will come to you at moments and from places you least expect) were probably the most difficult ones for me to grasp…until the referrals started arriving…out of left field.
When an organization truly exhibits a culture of excellence, we see greater collaboration and productivity, increased innovation, and improved satisfaction for both internal and external customers. Living with a giving spirit creates a rising tide that raises all ships, including the one belonging to the generator of this tide. Create a culture of excellence, and you will reap the rewards of excellence.
Contact me if you wish to adopt a culture of excellence The Go-Giver Way and enjoy extraordinary results.
Percy M. Cannon