So you’ve been mulling over the idea I proposed last week – that, under the new rules of work, you are a freelancer. No job is secure, and you need to be ready – at any time – to make a move into something new. Having a side hustle, a Plan B, a backup plan – all very important under the new rules of work.
And there’s something else you need to know to thrive in the new workplace: Givers win, takers lose.
The Old Rules
You eat what you kill. Greed is good. By any means necessary, you’re going to get yours, and screw anyone who moves too slow. Your slogan: You snooze, you lose. You withhold information from people you work with, and even your clients, because information is power, and power is all-important. Power lets you kill more, so you eat more. More, more, more is the relentless pursuit. Because there’s only so much to go around. Only one guy on top. And it’s going to be you.
The New Rules
Collaboration replaces competition. Information is shared openly and transparently. Collaboration yields deep personal connections with others, which, in turn, yields opportunities for growth and new jobs. You succeed by being of service. You build a strong personal brand with each person you treat well. You know there’s more than enough of everything to go around, so stress is reduced. One day you’re the leader, the next day you’re taking directions – it all depends on the task at hand.
The Taking Culture creates huge inefficiencies. It’s like the law firm that gets a new case in the LA office, but the lawyer with the best expertise is in DC – and she doesn’t get put on the case because all the billable hours need to stay in LA so they can make their numbers, and get their bonuses. The client has less than stellar assistance from the firm, and a bad taste in his mouth when he loses his case.
The Taking Culture creates ill will. It’s like the “marketing expert” whose best marketing is really of her persona. She sells programs and e-books and gimmicks promising that you’ll grow your business to be just as successful as hers. Yet, everything she sells is amateurish, off-the-shelf, unhelpful. She’s actually never done professional marketing. Hey, she doesn’t care – she has a mortgage to make, after all – and enough new people come to her via her online presence that she doesn’t give a hoot about the legions of disappointed customers she’s leaving in her wake. The suckers.
The Giving Culture turns all of it on its ear.
When focused on Giving, the LA office collaborates with the DC office, to give the client the best possible representation. The client is so happy that he continues to use the firm for years, and refers them many clients.
The online marketing guru who comes from a place of Giving and centers in her expertise – she delivers high-quality, practical materials to an expanding audience of raving fans. She never worries about making her mortgage. In fact, that sucker is paid off.
And that’s why givers win. Giving creates. It creates connection, it creates good feeling, it creates wealth.
Just a note to all my self-effacing, self-deprecating, people-pleasing friends out there: You don’t give until it hurts. You don’t give until you have nothing left. You don’t give to get the approval of others. That’s not the point of these new rules of work.
You give to create bonds and connections of appreciation between you and other givers. You give to collaborate. You give to set yourself up for what’s next.
You give because it feels so right and yields such rich rewards.
You give out of strength, because you know – don’t you? – that there is always plenty to go around.