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“You Can't Help People Who Won't Help Themselves”


by Glenn Shepard
January 18, 2016
Category:  Success



Gallatin, TN Feb 2
Scottsboro, AL Feb 5
Carrollton, GA Feb 16
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Dear Glenn,

A long-time personal friend of mine is also one of my firm’s clients. Unfortunately we aren’t seeing eye to eye on an important contractual issue and this has led to bad feelings. This isn’t the first time I’ve experienced my personal and professional life not jiving and unfortunately I never seem to know how to handle it well. Any advice on how friends should handle doing business together?

Kathy in Pennsylvania

Dear Kathy,

Don’t! Your best friends are your worst customers. Businesses get paid to serve their customers, which makes the customer the ultimate boss. As WalMart founder Sam Walton used to say, “There is only one boss - the customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down”.  Just as you shouldn’t hire a good friend because you wouldn’t want to fire a good friend, you shouldn’t let them hire you by letting them become your customer. You can always find more customers and employees, but good friends are few and far between.

   Thanks for your question.

- Glenn in Nashville, TN

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There’s an unspoken assumption that people who've lost their jobs and say they’re looking for a new one are working hard to find one.

But nothing could be further from the truth.

Several years ago, I’ve offered to help three people find new jobs and each gladly accepted.

I bought a copy of Jay Conrad Levinson’s “Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters: 400 Unconventional Tips, Tricks, and Tactics for Landing Your Dream Job” to help them, but never heard from any of them again. One didn’t answer my emails, and the other two didn’t call me as they promised to.

I was working harder to help them solve their problems than they were.

Unfortunately, this was nothing new. Over the years, I've noticed that what many folks who've asked me to help them get a job really want is for it to be handed to them on a silver platter.

Once while I was speaking at Auburn University, I met a woman who was struggling to feed herself and her daughter on $20k a year. She told me she needed to make at least $24k a year.

She was an accounts receivable manager and I knew that anyone who's good at bringing in past due accounts can easily make more than that. I had her write a promise that she would call five law firms that I referred her to and apply for a job. I followed up, but she never returned my calls. I also mailed her a copy of her promise, but never heard from her again.

I would have thought that when the unemployment rate shoots up, this might change. But time and experience have shown that it doesn’t.

The truth is that a lot of people are just too lazy to look for a job, and deserve to be unemployed.

If they’re not going to work hard to find a job, they're not going to work hard once they get one.

The good news is that no matter what the unemployment rate is, you can always find a job IF you’re willing to WORK hard enough to find it.

To Your Success,

P.S. Here’s an example. Megan was 21 and wanted to find a job in a hair salon in Nashville. Instead of looking in the Help Wanted ads, she Googled “The best hair salon in Nashville”. Breon’s Hair Salon came up, but she didn't call and ask if they were hiring. Instead, she showed up with her resume in hand, and got the job. While that won’t work everywhere, showing that level of initiative puts her miles ahead of others who think that applying for jobs online while in their pajamas is enough.

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