Excerpts from Beware The Naked Man Who Offers You His Shirt

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About Getting Started

  • Preparing to win – take this job and love it!
    It isn’t just dog eat dog out there; it’s what Ray Kroc, the founder of McDonald’s, called “rat eat rat.” The first thing you’ll find is that there are one hundred applications for the one job you want. Worse, you’re not graded on a curve here. This is no classroom. Second is last if you don’t get the job.
  • Deliver more than you promise
    It’s the single best way to stay employed. Successful people do things others don’t like to do. Lou Holtz has used the same expression every time I’ve had a conversation with him: “What can I do for you?” It isn’t that he always does it, but that he cares enough to want to try. Not many people do. But then, not many people have made it as far as he has.

About Working Your Way Up

  • How to succeed
    Determination + Goal Setting + Concentration = Success.

    Let’s take that one step further. There is a fourth quality which is required for success…courage. That all-important asset, determination, can be undermined by the fear that comes with a new venture. In my opinion, many people fail to achieve their goals not because they are afraid of the job at hand, but because they have grown so familiar in the comfort zone of their job that they are afraid to meet the challenge of a new job. What people don’t know is that courage can be learned.

  • Volunteering.
    After I became a volunteer, I discovered that networking and volunteering are almost synonymous. A lot of what I’ve learned about selling, public speaking, raising money, working as part of a team, management, and organization — in other words, a lot of what I learned about everything worth learning in running a business — I learned by being a volunteer worker. When I made mistakes, and I made plenty of them as a volunteer, they were part of a learning process that I could apply to my own business situation. And when I learned a new technique, I applied that too.
  •  The Mackay 33 for Employees
    A 33-question tool to put you in touch with your corporate culture. You should bother with this if you’re concerned about the direction your company, and therefore your career, is taking. You should definitely bother if you have responsibility in any of the areas that need improving. Ideally, supervisors should ask their people to fill these out, on a don’t-sign-your-name basis, of course.


  • Why some people never fail
    After Edison’s 700th unsuccessful attempt to invent the electric light, he was asked by a New York Times reporter, “How does it feel to have failed 700 times?” The great inventor responded, “I have not failed 700 times. I have not failed once. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work.”
  • Spend some time in the trenches
    There is no dirty work in your business. One way to prove how important everyone and every job is, is to take on the job yourself. If you believe there is no such thing as a good job with a shovel, then so does the guy who has the job. You can’t expect his attitude to be any better than yours. At least once a year, I’ll spend a day at one of the jobs at my company generally regarded as menial. It’s not a stunt; I don’t announce it in advance or announce it afterward, either. I don’t hire a photographer to record it; the house organ does not carry a story about it. I just do it. Believe me, that’s enough. Word gets around. And more than once a year, I will go out with a salesperson on his or her calls. That works, too.
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