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Clients Who Are Friends Are Better Than Friends Who Are Clients

"Who's Got Your Back" Book CoverI’ve been reading a book, “Who’s Got Your Back” by Keith Ferrazzi which, in a nutshell, is about understanding and trusting relationships that help create success. I’m about half way through the book and I had a realization about the value of numerous relationships I’ve had for years with people from around the world, who all have greatness. There are people like Winston Marsh in Melbourne, Australia, who hosted me so I could come and speak to the National Speakers Association of Australia and his small business group in Australia.  There are people like Max Hitchens in Sydney, Australia, who I met, like Winston, through my dear friend Terry Brock. This week Terry Brock and his friend Gina Carr, are coming to stay with me in Rochester Hills for our semi-annual get-together. Terry and I have been doing this for about seven years now, and it has become a tradition. I’ve known Terry for almost twenty years, and the relationships that have come from my friendship with Terry are no less than amazing. I never would have met Max and Winston had it not been for Terry – I never would’ve gone to Australia to do my presentations if it weren’t for Terry. I look at other friends like Bob Bolya, who I’ve known for twenty years, and the get-togethers that we’ve had and the knowledge and experience that we’ve been able to share with each other. I also think of my mentor, Floyd Wickman, and what I’ve learned from him throughout the years about selling, dialogue and how to communicate with people. And Mike Pallin, who works with Floyd, who turned me on to Napoleon Hill early on in my life, which has had a huge impact on my personal and professional growth and experience.

As I read this book, “Who’s Got Your Back” by Keith Ferrazzi, I’m starting to realize the depth of my relationships that I have built throughout the years, and how important they are going forward. The people that I just mentioned are the tip of the iceberg – there are many people, like Connie Podesta and Eileen McDargh and Steve Rizzo and Mark Sanborn and Mikki Williams and Pegine, who I have learned so much from while working with them. These people would stand behind me and help me with anything I needed, and I would do the same for them. In fact, many of these people call me on occasion and know that my door is open for me to answer any kind of questions that they have.

I think many of us overlook our relationships and the power of having this connectivity in our lives. In this blog post I not only want to share that you must read “Who’s Got Your Back” because it’s a very powerful book, but I also want you to think about connecting with these past relationships that can become disconnected over time. With a little effort, you can reconnect with these people, just like I have since I started reading this book.

I’m very much looking forward to Terry coming up today because I know that our time together will be high-value, high-entertainment and another great memory. I look forward to continuing to reconnect with people from my past – the people who have made an impression on me and who have value in relationships, and I am now beginning to learn how to avoid the people that don’t bring value to relationships and that are cynical and doubtful about the values I have in my life and the beliefs on what it takes to be successful, personally and professionally.

I’m also realizing the value of reconnecting with friends. I recently reconnected with Martie Schultz who worked as my assistant for forteen years, up until 2007. I reconnected with Martie because she had left and gotten another job when Primeau Productions was going through a transition. Primeau Productions survived its reinvention and transition several years ago, and my team needed another person to help pull it all together, and to be reliable and available for front office support. So I recently reached out to Martie through Facebook and we reconnected. Within a week she was back on the Primeau Productions team. The value of maintaining relationships and reconnecting can be very beneficial in many ways. It’s also crucial in other ways, because when it’s all said and done, it’s not about how much money you have in the bank at the end of your journey, it’s about the relationships that you make along the way that you can value, and the trust and respect that you earn from these relationships. That’s what gets me jazzed in the morning, and that’s what “Who’s Got Your Back” by Keith Ferrazzi is all about.

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