Do you know the most powerful success secret to making it big as a writer?
- Natural talent?
- An English degree?
- How many awards you’ve won?
Dale Carnegie said this back in 1937:
15 percent of your success comes from your technical skill. The other 85% comes from how well you deal with people.
If you think
that’s outdated, check this out.
Google did a survey of managers in 2009 called Project Oxygen. The researchers wanted to know:
- if managers matter
- if so, then why do they matter
- what skills are responsible for their success
Here are so
me of those skills:
- Be a good coach.
- Empower; don’t micromanage.
- Be interested in direct reports, success and well-being.
- Don’t be a sissy: Be productive and results-oriented.
- Be a good communicator and listen to your team.
- Help your employees with career development.
- Have a clear vision and strategy for the team.
- Have key technical skills so you can advise the team.
Do you see a theme running through these?
Every one of these skills involves dealing with people.
“Your success as a writer depends more on your people skills than your talent.” Frank McKinley
Success Secret #1 – You need other people.
Success doesn’t depend much on genius. It does depend heavily on how well you know and relate to other people.
Here are some quick and easy ways to supercharge your human relations IQ.
- Be courteous. Say thank you when others do you a favor.
- Do favors for other people. Don’t come asking first. Give if you want to receive.
- Ask for what you want – and frame it so the other person comes out a winner.
The bottom line is this: treat people as well or better than you want them to treat you. When you do this, you’ll set the standard for how you’re treated.
Success Secret #2 – Don’t wait for people to come to you.
Four years ago, my son and I visited a new church.
Here’s how I got him ready.
“Drew, there are probably a lot of nice people in there. Some of them may come up to you and introduce themselves. But there’s no guarantee of that. Don’t wait around. You introduce yourself to people first and good things will happen.”
I thought he’d just nod his head and do nothing.
Before I even got a seat, Drew introduced me to 4 or 5 people he’d already met!
After church, the same thing happened.
If you want friends, be one. Make the first move. Invite people to chat, spend time with you, and work together. You’ll be amazed at what might happen!
Here’s what happened when I made the first move this year:
- I’ve done 5 expert interviews
- I’ve been invited to speak on a webinar and a podcast
- I have written for two other blogs
- I’ll be doing a Q&A this fall at the popular Tribe Conference
If you want things to happen, do what my friend Anne Peterson told me:
Always be networking.
Success Secret #3 – Always give people a reason to continue with you.
If you struggle with making people connections, let me recommend a book I’m reading called the Improv Manifesto.
If you’ve ever seen the show Whose Line is it Anyway, you’ve seen improv at its best. I’m not asking you to become a standup comedian. Neither am I asking you to become an actor. The point is there is a lot you can learn from this acting if you want to succeed as a writer.
Here are a few takeaways:
- Make offers. In other words, give them a reason to say or do something. Think in terms of what they want, not what you want.
- Start off strong. The first impression you make will last, so make it count.
- Go for it. Reach out and make that connection now. Do the best you can and remember you’ve got nothing to lose.
“You’ll get what you want when you ask for it.”
Now Do This
This week set a networking goal.
Here are some suggestions.
- Contact an expert and ask for an interview.
- Do a book review and send a Tweet to the author.
- Offer to write about something your favorite Blogger’s audience needs but hasn’t gotten yet.
“You can get everything in life you want when you help enough other people get what they want.” – Zig Ziglar
Have a fantastic week! I can’t wait to hear how this works for you.
- Share your story in the comments.
- Feel free to ask me for help if you’re getting stuck.
- Want more tips? Subscribe for a new one every week!