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Welcome to the world’s first

BIZ ALPHABET SERIES of blog posts — 




 Does it make a big difference if I tell you 

to do something . . . or ask you to do it?

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Telling you what to do might work out fine in the military, or aboard a plane or boat, or operating heavy equipment . . . or if you’re a prisoner, a horse, or a Cocker Spaniel.

But, in business, unless you –the owner or manager– need to prompt cooperation with others to get a job done, the results you’ll trigger by giving directives cannot compare with the response you’ll get from making a request, which can be astonishing. And when was the last time you got great results from giving orders?

US President and General Dwight David Eisenhower taught his senior officers how to exercise leadership by pushing a tangle of string across a tabletop vs. taking one end and pulling it, which of course ended with the string in a straight line moving in a single direction, instead of a jumble going nowhere.

Yes, sincerity, genuineness, eye contact, backpats, your posture, tone of voice, and and smiles often make the difference. So does the reputation you carry for having integrity and authenticity — perhaps the two most important qualities an entrepreneur can have on the road to success.

And, interestingly, integrity and authenticity are ever too late to cultivate.

Well, okay, you know all that, but how far must you go with the “please” and “thank you” routine? Truth? You’ll never go far enough, and if it’s actually become “routine,” go back to your cave.

Here are a few treasured learnings I can share:

  • Even when we think we know, little do we ever really know about what life circumstances will bring, and where we’ll end up with our businesses in the years ahead.

  • I have seen discounted, dismissed, dissed and insulted employees turn up years later being the bosses of those who once humiliated and looked down on them.

  • I have seen long-term top customers walk away from businesses in an instant after learning about relatives (a son, in one case) who worked for the provider business, unbeknownst to the boss, who were routinely berated, chastised, scolded, yelled at and wrongly blamed for screw-ups.

  • I have personally watched businesses run by owners who were rude, constantly preoccupied, always angry, and routinely barking out orders . . . go down and under.

Do you –like the carpenter and heart surgeon– make a practice of measuring twice and cutting once? Do you think twice before speaking once?


you can delegate authority,

but you cannot delegate


Responsibility is yours alone.

When you ask peopleto get things done, asking nicely is not manipulation, it’s respect. Use words that inspire and that demonstrate your passion for your business: opportunity, challenge, reward, investment, courage, pride, workmanship, spirit, spunk, gumption (add your own) . . . the right words make your passion contagious.

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Hal@Businessworks.US    302.933.0911

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Many thanks for your visit and God Bless You.

 Make today a GREAT day for someone!

One comment so far

One Comment to “BIZ ALPHABET SERIES… “D””

  1. […] do it yourself or monitor progress to make sure the person you asked to do it, does it! Remember, we can delegate authority to get things done, but we cannot delegate responsibility for getting things […]

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