January 25, 2010

Rule #2: Be helpful

Whether you want to be successful on Twitter or in the real world as a leader, the key is simple: 

Be helpful. 

Commit yourself to solving problems, anticipating needs, growing everyone you spend time with and finding opportunities to share your wealth (both intangibles and tangibles).  If you are helpful, you'll find that the Law of Reciprocity will kick in -- and people will outgive you exponentially over time. 

Being helpful will also assist you in obeying rule #1: Feed Your Mind Good Stuff.  Take mentorship, for example.  You spend time learning and synthesizing information to have a strategic mind.  You then share this wisdom with someone who is coming up or needs this edge.  If you've picked your mentee correctly, they execute on your ideas and information and it changes his or her life.  They are incredibly grateful and search for ways to show you - and the positive feedback makes making a difference addictive to you. 

When I first got on Twitter and Facebook, I asked a seasoned veteran for some advice and his answer perplexed me: "The internet rewards what the internet likes," he told me.  In other words, instead of trying to use social media as a marketing platform, he schooled me to use it as a make a difference platform where it was very easy for people to give back or pay it forward.  It's worked too.  When I spend my effort trying to 'be helpful' on social media, my following grows.  

As I travel the world, I meet people almost every day that follow one of my social media platforms, and they tell me about how my advice is helping them - and that's why I continue to devote time and energy to writing and RT'ing helpful content.  In fact, I'm addicted to it. 

This whole notion reminds me of something that Dale Carnegie wrote and later shared with his Great Depression era YMCA classes on speaking and leading: "You will accomplish more developing a sincere interest in people than you'll accomplish trying to get people interested in you."

By the way, no matter who you are, you can be helpful too.  Tune into the world around you, and spot places where you can add or multiply value.  Capture these opportunities like you capture financial opportunities.  At any level of a company, being helpful will get you noticed and put you into a positive feedback loop over time.  

Posted at 9:25 AM in Business Effectiveness , Leadership  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)  |  TrackBack (0)



very informational... educative as well, i read and felt like reading over and over again....good job!


Tim, you give some great advice here. I loved the Carnegie quote. Another quote that inspires me along this line (though I can't recall who said it) is: you can get everything you want in life if you can just help enough other people to get what they want.


Tim - this was a great read to start the week off. "Be Helpful" is my mantra this week. Thanks


very true Tim. it is about serving and giving. The biggest givers are the biggest leaders.

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