Not so long ago a good CEO said to his team “Don’t be anyone’s best customer.” He was talking about marketing vendors but I took it to mean so much more. Think about it… no one ever works on the relationships they have already secured. It’s the reason that companies give the new offers to new customers. His point to us was to always be negotiating prices, never just kick back and take what is offered because it’s easy. I am not sure what the others in the room heard but I heard don’t be anyone’s “safe bet” and I ran with the idea. This can be applied to all parts of life but the two biggies are where you choose to work and the relationships you have.
When it comes to the workplace, you want the organization you work for to be actively engaging and growing their employees. Are they supporting continued education and offering opportunities to your grow skill set? It’s important. If you are not growing, getting better, becoming a better leader, then you should think about finding a place where those things exist. And in the reverse, are you bringing ideas to the table, engaged in the industry and adding value? Of course, companies have the advantage they can trim the fat where needed but have you ever considered that you may need to do the trimming or at least ask for more in the relationship? The point is not to be job hopping but you should not park yourself some place forever and just be “happy to be there”. You should be looking to get to the next level, all the time.
A similar thought can be applied relationships. Have you ever been in a relationship where you are the only person initiating the texts or the suggestions to get together…and the other person has an 80% flake rate? Sucks, I know. But you girl, have become this person’s “if nothing else better comes along, I will meet up with you” friend (or date if it’s romantic). No one likes this. You should not tolerate this. Your friends should be working on having a friendship with you just as hard as you are with them.
The point is that relationships of every kind are “give and take”. For the most part, people consider this romantically but it’s easy to forget in other areas because frankly, it’s too easy to coast. We coast at work, we cost at play and we cost in where were spend our dollars (ie. that bank you should have left years ago). Our job is to get as much out of the things we care about as we give them. Right now – take stock of some areas in your life and start the process of getting rid of things/people/places that will not or cannot serve you and feel free to share the results!