I entered the business world with two goals in mind: to make a living and to change the world. He aspired to a straight-shooting, forthright approach and wanted to be that voice of honesty and reason, that “breath of fresh air” so often missing from business culture.
In this sense, I was not successful. Organizations, and everyone in them, resist change, and the business world is made up of real people, with real aspirations, emotions and needs, and changing the way business is done would mean changing this human core. If I, or anyone, wants to be successful, it means learning to understand, predict, manage and work among (and in spite of) people – not to change them.
I Come First is simple shorthand to remind us that every person comes first to him or herself – for that is how we are wired – and our ability to recognize other peoples’ wants and needs, aspirations and fears will teach us everything we need to know about successfully managing, selling, persuading and succeeding in the world. We must stay in the game, convince others, negotiate and be political – and in doing so we really can thrive in this strange mix of perception, values and conflict — the adult sandbox called the workplace.
Thank you for visiting, reading through the blogs and the sample of the book and maybe even dropping me a note. I’d love to hear from you. – Mark