7 people Investment lessons I believe in
Invest in people not stocks
Whether that’s your network, friends, hires, or family:
We all have our investment strategy when it comes to people.
I spend a lot of my free time for free to get people started and show them how I built what I built so they can give it a shot themselves. If you read my stuff you know that I’m all about operational details and not just visionary statements.
This happens either through all the free content, guides, etc. that I put out (which attract inbound leads for my consulting) or also by helping out people who are unlikely to ever be clients.
But why? It’s not just out of the goodness of my heart, it’s a lesson that I had to learn a couple of years ago. Other people “invested” their time in me even though I had nothing to offer in return. They lifted me up without any promise in return.
I realize that I’m a happy coincidence through the circumstances I’ve been born in, the discipline that seems to be in me but mostly the luck I had to know the right people.
If we’re just looking at it from a transactional point of view (please don’t, but for argument’s sake) it’s worth it to lift each other up. And there’s a system to having healthy relationships.
I would be nowhere without my friends and business connections. We refer each other, pass on mandates that better fit, and are simply there for each other if things go sour. We also trade ass-kicking when they are needed.
And when I see people pop up in my vicinity I tend to check whether they are a good investment of my time.
I believe we all do this to some degree but don’t talk about it.
If you want one general rule that includes all the following learnings: Invest in few, with intent.
When hiring, making friends, or simply networking.
Here’s what I would have told my younger self when it comes to people:
Visible leverage is overrated
Being relentless eats education for breakfast
Give trust before others have to earn it
Don’t fix people, cut them off
Competition is a lie, envy is ugly
Fans admire. Friends criticize
Be who you want to have around you first
1. Visible leverage is overrated
Buddying up and friending up with people just because they already have the social clout and amount of followers on LinkedIn is like investing in an already mature company. Everyone does it and they probably don’t care about you unless you can offer something in return with equal leverage.
I’m not saying that networking is useless or that you can’t find good friends who are already “popular”. But intentionally lift people up "below” you. For one, they will know you’re doing it because of them and not because they “have” something.
I battled 5 years ago with an inherent distrust towards other people’s intentions. These interactions of “Why are you helping ME? I don’t deserve it” slowly eroded my arrogant mindset.
2. Being relentless eats education for breakfast
People who are not giving up even if they get constantly beaten down with whatever they put their mind to have the best chance to rise up. From whatever I believed to be true in life through the years it was not the tactical tips that did the most for me.
The moment when I stopped giving up and kept trying until I was satisfied is when I started to gain traction. I’m not saying that everyone with a strong mindset can lift themselves up from their circumstances, that would be tone-deaf.
But without it, you won’t be under any circumstance. No tactical tip will make you successful. Nothing you do in life can work without repeatability.
3. Give trust before others have to earn it
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