Career Success Rule #37

Career Success Rule #37Interpersonally competent people are good at building strong, lasting relationships. My best advice for relationship building is to “give with no expectation of anything in return.”

I know that it seems that the world works on quid pro quo. People expect it. That’s why when you do something nice and unexpected for others and expect nothing in return, you’ll be on your way to building strong relationships with them.

Here’s an example. In a recent blog post, I featured an article in Self Improvement Magazine by Tricia Molloy called “CRAVE Your Goals.” I featured it because I thought Tricia presented and interesting and unique way of looking at goals that would be beneficial to my readers. I also hoped that I would give Tricia some exposure to an audience she might not normally reach. I didn’t know Tricia at the time.

The day after the post went up I got this comment from Tricia.

Hi, Bud,

Thanks for sharing my ‘CRAVE Your Goals!’ system with your readers. I enjoyed reading your comments about each step.

Tristan’s comment about common sense not equaling common practice is so true. People often think these practices are too easy to work. They assume achieving goals always takes hard work and a bit of suffering. What I suggest is to start with the one CRAVE step that resonates the most–like cleaning out some clutter or using an affirmation–and that will give you the energy and clarity to try another step until all five steps become a habit.

To more common sense!


Tricia and I are friends now – all because I took a little of my time to feature her article on my blog. This was a win/win/win/win. My readers benefited; Tricia benefited, Tristan, the publisher of Self Improvement Magazine benefited and I benefited — all because I took a little step and did something with no expectation of anything in return. It’s karmic really, it seems that very often you get things back when you least expect to.

Strong relationships have no quid pro quo. In a strong relationship, all parties do things willingly for one another, for the benefit of the individuals involved and for the benefit of the relationship. It’s similar to the idea behind the hit movie “Pay it Forward.”

When you pay it forward in a relationship you are demonstrating that the relationship, and the other person or persons, is important to you. You build good will by being the one who is willing to go first. In my coaching, speaking and consulting business I have found that paying it forward has helped me build solid, long term relationships with clients. Try it, it will work for you too.

Interpersonally competent people build relationships by doing for others. They don’t keep score. They know that in the long run, good things will come back to them if they do good things for others.

I am a member of the Creating WE Institute, a group of people with multi disciplinary expertise who are working together to create new forms of engagement and innovation in the workplace. Look for our book 42 Rules for Creating WE later this year. I’m contributing three rules. One is called “There is No Quid Pro Quo in WE.” I believe this. Giving with no expectation of return is the best way to build strong, lasting, mutually beneficial relationships.

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