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  • Are There Any Go-Giver Companies Out There?

    Published July 24th, 2012 by

    We’ve had a number of people write to us, interested in looking for a position with a company that better aligns with the Go-Giver philosophy than their current place of work, asking, “Do you have a list of Go-Giver-simpatico companies you might point me to, or a place to start in my search?” We thought we’d both share a few thoughts on that one:

    BOB: While there are definitely many, many companies and businesses that embody the Go-Giver philosophy, there really is no specific list of Go-Giver-type companies we know of. (That is, other than the businesses and individuals whose profiles appear at TheGoGiverScrapbook.com.)

    I think a question you might ask yourself, as you consider different companies to interview with, is what particular values they appear to uphold. For example: Does leadership place a focus on providing a benevolent environment for their employees? Do they focus on providing great value to their customers?

    You can go through each of the Five Laws and ask yourself, does this company act in accordance with this one?

    Don’t forget about the importance of that company’s sustained profitability, as well. Since, in a free-enterprise-based economy, a company can only profit continually by doing things right and pleasing its customers (and employees).

    As you research these companies, speak with people who might be familiar with them, including both current and even former employees.

    JOHN: You might also start by taking a look at well-known companies that seem to embody the values you want to be part of — even if they don’t offer the specific kinds of work or positions you’re looking for. For example, Zappos and Southwest Airlines are two companies well known for going out of their way to make sure their customers and employees are well taken care of and thoroughly enjoying themselves. (And it shows!)

    Money magazine and others routinely run “best places to work for” lists that are worth exploring to add to that picture. WorldBlu.com runs an annual list of “most democratic workplaces.” There are others.

    Create for yourself a portfolio of ideal companies that you can use as a sort of yardstick for how you’d like the company you work with to act.

    Then, start looking around your local community and do the same thing: identify companies that seem to you to create the kind of atmosphere you resonate with. (Regardless of whether they’re in your particular line of work or not.)

    Here in my town, there are a few restaurants and shops that we always love visiting, because it’s so obvious that people there are well taken care of. And there are those where that is clearly not the case.

    In other words, develop your sense (Bob would say, your spidey sense) of when you are in the presence of a Go-Giver business, and when you’re not. As you do, you’ll start developing your own radar for the right place where you might find a home.

    Please let us know what you find!

    The Go-Giver And Rotary: An “International” Connection

    Published July 16th, 2012 by

    What a great surprise to receive pictures such as this. John and I always love to know when our book is given to a foreign dignity, especially when it’s in that person’s language. And, to top it off, it was part of a celebration of one of the world’s most well-respected organizations.

    Sakuji Tanaka and Steven Ryder

    Sakuji Tanaka and Steven Ryder

    Here, Japanese business leader, Sakuji Tanaka of Yashio, Saitama, the new President of Rotary International for 2012-2013 is presented a copy of The Go-Giver (Japanese Language Edition) by my great friend, Steven Ryder. Steven is the outgoing President of Elm City Rotary Club of Keene, NH. He is also a very successful entrepreneur, currently President of True North Networks and the True Nut Company.

    Our Japanese publisher did an outstanding job, featuring a beautifully-designed hardcover with amazing (often hilarious) illustrations throughout.

    Steve, thank you for giving us a tremendous gift…of gifting the book to Mr. Tanaka.

    No More “Mr. Nice Guy”

    Published February 12th, 2012 by

    From time to time, John or I will receive a letter from a reader of The Go-Giver asking for advice on applying the principles; usually within the context of frustration at dealing with people who are not Go-Givers.

    Typically, at the root of the challenge is an underlying false premise, thus the name of a two-part post with that right in the title.

    Just recently, we received an email like this, and we hope the response will help you if you face a similar challenge. (Of course, we received the writer’s permission to print his letter, and we have disguised or deleted any details that could possibly reveal his identity or location.)

    He writes:

    The sales profession is very interesting. I’ve tried hard to be “Mr. Nice Guy,” a “Go-Giver,” and to focus on helping others. What’s interesting is how some customers will try to take advantage of me (and our company). Often they exaggerate or outright lie, make promises they don’t keep, and in general treat me like dirt. (I’m sure they treat all “salespeople” like that. I don’t take it personally.)

    There are days when I feel like, “Okay, no more Mr. Nice Guy. I will just sell them and won’t care so much.” I’m trying to decide on which “sales personality” to adopt: Nice guy or hardass. My natural personality is “Nice Guy,” but I’m getting tired of being run around and taken advantage of.

    May I ask for your thoughts about this? Any advice?

    My response: While I’m very sorry about what you are experiencing, this one is pretty easy to answer.

    You may be confusing being a Go-Giver with being a “nice guy” who allows himself to be treated poorly and taken advantage of. In fact, being a Go-Giver means no such thing. And being a “nice guy” should never (let’s make that NEVER) be confused with allowing oneself to be taken advantage of or treated poorly or disrespectfully in any way.

    Being a Go-Giver simply means that you seek to embody the philosophy of focusing on providing great value to others, and that you follow the Five Laws. Nowhere in there does it say anything about being taken advantage of.

    I have a favorite saying I’ve tweeted, posted on Facebook, and even written a blog post around over at my Burg.com site. And that is:

    “If you are nice and being taken advantage of, it’s not because you are nice — it’s because you’re allowing yourself to be taken advantage of.”

    When you say, There are days when I feel like, “Okay, no more Mr. Nice Guy. I will just sell them and won’t care so much,” this implies that you expect to sell more by not caring about them. But in order to sell most effectively you do have to care about adding value to their businesses. I’m not saying you have to care about any other aspect of their life — but you do have to care about adding value to their businesses.

    And they may simply not be interested in anything about you other than how you can potentially help them in their business. If that’s the case, then fine; focus on them, and on how you can give them more in value than you take from them in payment (Law #1). That’s the only (honest) way to build a profitable business, in both the short-term and the long-term.

    Please don’t misunderstand or confuse what being a Go-Giver means.

    Being a Go-Giver is indeed a profitable way of business. It’s also a way of doing business out of strength, not out of weakness (being taken advantage of).

    Best wishes for great success. Looking forward to hearing back from you.

    And, The Go-Giver Thank YOU Contest Winners Are…

    Published July 5th, 2011 by

    Yes, drum roll please. Well, after one month, including two weeks of submitting videos and two weeks of voting, we finally have the winners of The Go-Giver Thank YOU Contest ready to announce.

    And, the winners are…

    Grand Prize $1,000Sabrina Risley

    Five Runners Up

    #1 – Norbeth DeJesus

    #2 – Laura Newman

    #3 – Christie Ellis

    There was a tie for 4th Runner Up, decided by a toss of the coin, which resulted in…

    #4 – Gina Parris

    #5 – Amy Wells


    Today the runners up will get to decide, in order of their finish, which coaching session — based on The Five Laws of Stratospheric Success — they will choose.


    Again, the awesome coaches who have volunteered their time to do this are:

    Law #1, The Law of Value – Melanie Benson Strick and Jim Palmer

    Law #2, The Law of Compensation – John David Mann

    Law #3, The Law of Influence – Dondi Scumaci

    Law #4, The Law of Authenticity – Dixie “Dynamite” Gillaspie

    Law #5, The Law of Receptivity – Randy Gage

    John David Mann and I want to thank everyone who participated either by submitting a video or by voting.

    And, mainly, we want to thank each and every one of you for being such awesome Ambassadors of The Go-Giver Message.

    But We All Already Knew That

    Published July 2nd, 2011 by

    We recently received the following piece (a bit truncated for space) from reader Vince Vidoti.

    A year after reading Go-Givers Sell More and participating in a Go-Givers workshop, I asked my district mates, “What does it mean to be a Go-Giver?” I wasn’t surprised by their responses.

    Times are changing, and so must organizations. We speak of delivering value almost as often as we spill caramel macchiatos on our passenger seats. (Or is that just me?) And how do the authors remind us is the best way to deliver value? Excellence, consistency, attention, empathy, and appreciation. Remember that your income is a reflection of how effectively you touch people’s lives. Creating and adding value is the bullet; being a good person is the gun.

    The answer to “What does it mean to be a Go-Giver?” is all around us. The authors say, “[Great salespeople] are great because they create a vast and spreading sphere of goodwill wherever they go. They enrich, enhance, and add value to people’s lives. They make people happier.”

    Think of your parents, the server at your favorite eatery, the UPS guy, perhaps your local police officer or fireman. When was the last time we recognized the impact these individuals had on our lives? How many of them have read about what it means to be a go-giver? Yet people all around us are genuine. They give for the sake of giving, and are selfless. They approach people with compassion, and listen with real curiosity.

    And by the way, those were the main themes within my district mates’ answers.

    Maybe the reason people seem to relate to and truly embrace Go-Givers Sell More is that it delivers incredible insight into the psyche of the most successful salespeople. Or maybe it’s just because it highlights the things we already do on a daily basis, and helps us realize we had a Go-Giver inside of us all along — we just needed someone to help us makes its acquaintance.

    I like Vince’s piece a lot. For one thing, it’s the first time I can recall ever hearing the go-giver philosophy being encapsulated thusly: “Creating and adding value is the bullet; being a good person is the gun.”

    But seriously.

    Often in interviews we say it’s for us to hear from people telling us, “Wow, those ideas in your book were so different from anything I’ve ever thought before!” — no, what we hear a lot of is, “You know, what you write in there is exactly how I always thought the world worked! I just never quite put it into words.”

    And Vince’s last few sentences beautifully captures that sentiment:

    “Maybe the reason people seem to relate to and truly embrace Go Givers Sell More is that it … highlights the things we already do on a daily basis, and helps us realize we had a Go-Giver inside of us all along — we just needed someone to help us makes its acquaintance.”

    Nicely put, Vince!

    And, Let The Voting Begin!

    Published June 20th, 2011 by

    This was tough! I mean, really, really difficult! The panel of mysterious, secretive, clandestine, ninja-like, un-named judges, whose names and votes are forever sealed in figurative hermetically-sealed jars, struggled through a weekend of watching countless video entries into “The Go-Giver Thank YOU” Contest.

    NO NO, wait…we didn’t struggle because the videos weren’t fun to watch. Quite the contrary, they were awesome! I mean, truly awesome!!

    The challenge was they were all so terrific and inspiring that choosing just ten finalist was mind-bogglingly difficult. We did it by voting separately and tallying up the totals, and each of us expressing how lucky we felt that we didn’t have to go through the pressure of being the sole decision-maker.

    So, you’ll notice there are ten. They are in alphabetical order. You can vote for one person. Feel free to change your mind if you’d like. When you re-vote it will override your previous choice.

    We also included two more as Honorable Mentions because they both tied for 11th, and were mere percentage points behind the 10th person. While you can’t vote for them, we know you’ll enjoy their videos as well.

    Now it is your turn. It is up to you to determine who the winners will be. So, go forth my friends, and vote. So, go forth, my friends, and vote. Though, unlike certain voting campaigns, vote early but not often. :-)

    Mainly, have fun watching these superb videos. Oh, the voting goes through Friday, July 1st and the winners will be announced on Tuesday, July 5th.

    And…a huge, huge thanks to everyone who took the time, made the effort, and shared their hearts by submitting their videos.



    So, Win $1,000 *Instead* of an iPad 2

    Published June 4th, 2011 by

    We have become aware that Apple does not allow their iPads® to be used in third party promotions or contests (Guidelines for Third Party Promotions). Yesterday, several friends emailed us an article stating that giving away a free iPad 2 as a prize is contrary to Apple’s policy.

    Regardless of whether we agree or disagree with their policy and/or strategy, we absolutely respect intellectual property rights, copyrights and trademarks.

    So, we are changing the Grand Prize from an iPad 2 ($829 value) to a $1,000 cash prize.  With this $1,000 the winner is free to independently purchase an iPad 2 or whatever else they would like with the prize money.

    We did contact Apple to make sure this was true and apparently it has been their policy since at least January, 2011. We apologize for any infringement we committed.

    Meanwhile, we continue to receive great video entries. If you have not yet submitted yours, please know we’re looking forward to watching it. If you’re not planning to enter as a contestant, we hope you’ll participate by voting once that part of the contest begins.

    By the way, we make no judgment regarding Apple’s policy. It is their company and their products and they have the right to determine how to market them.

    In terms of marketing, yes, it seems – at least on the surface – to be a rather counterproductive strategy.

    Still, let’s face it, Apple didn’t get to be as successful as they are without knowing what they are doing. So, in the name of marketing, branding, positioning, etc., any thoughts on why they have this rule in place?

    The one with the best answer will win a free iP…whoops, never mind. 😉

    The Go-Giver Thank YOU Contest. We Hope You’ll Play!

    Published May 25th, 2011 by

    True, we really can’t thank you enough. We’d like to try though.

    So, to say “Thank YOU” for all your help in The Go-Giver soaring past the 200,000 mark in sales, John David Mann and I have put together a contest with some really cool prizes.

    The Grand Prize Winner will receive a brand new iPad 2: 64 GB with Wi-Fi + 3G (Yep, only the best for you!) 😉

    Five additional winners will receive a one-on-one, personal coaching session with one of today’s top authorities; each session based on one of the Five Laws from the book.

    This is about YOU, and we invite you to participate. Mostly, we invite you to have fun!

    Check out the Contest web page.

    Passing 200,000 … and Thanking YOU!

    Published May 3rd, 2011 by

    Our awesome publisher (Penguin/Portfolio) emailed John and me yesterday with some great news: sales of The Go-Giver, including both domestic and international, has passed the 200,000 mark (actually, 222,473 but who’s counting?) :-) and heading toward the big Quarter-Mill.


    We wish to extend our absolute gratitude to every one of you for being amazing Ambassadors for the message. This could not have happened so quickly — it could not happened at all — without you.

    So, congratulations and thank you, to YOU … Team Go-Giver!

    Response to Losses: Give More

    Published March 29th, 2011 by

    The New York Times small business blog today ran a piece about a high tech entrepreneur who recently took her business through a major crash course in course-correction. (You’ll never guess how. Read on.)

    “Success came quickly for SolTec Electronics,” begins the piece by Times columnist Adriana Gardella. Created by founder Dawn Gluskin in her living room in 2008, the firm sells hard-to-find circuit board components and solves big companies’ supply-crunch problems.

    By the beginning of 2011, Dawn found her company had suffered its first quarterly loss, and could be headed for trouble. She responded with agility and creativity, putting in place a number of fascinating changes, for example, in her financial controls and management.

    Here is the change that most caught our eye:

    Ms. Gluskin, SolTec’s top revenue generator, said she is trying to “clone” herself. She revamped SolTec’s sales training program and now holds weekly meetings with her sales representatives during which she emphasizes the importance of relationship selling. Recently, she had her sales staff read The Go-Giver, by Bob Burg and John David Mann. “The moral,” she said, “is the more you give, the more sales you’ll get.”

    SolTec has many competitors, but Ms. Gluskin said it stands out by emphasizing customer needs. She urges her sales staff to get to know customers on a personal level and help them even when it will not directly benefit SolTec. . .

    You can read the full text of the article here.

    It’s not every day we wake up and find we’ve been mentioned in the New York Times. (Now that is something that goes well with a cup of Rachel’s Famous Coffee and a danish.)

    Our thanks to you, Dawn, and to you, Adriana!