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What’s in it for me?

That’s a phrase which is particularly popular in sales, to help marketing and sales people to focus on the customer rather than themselves. WIIFM.

But do you want to be a self-focused person and leader?

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Milton Friedman declared that the primary purpose of a business is to make money. Over the course of the last century, we’ve kidded ourselves into thinking that this is the ONLY purpose of business.

But it’s not true.

The money is just a holding place for adding value to the world. Sure, you can transfer money to someone else and it makes them happy – but it hasn’t actually made the world a better place until someone uses it to DO something.

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MLKquotePEOPLE are sometimes puzzled by this concept of “deep values” in the for-profit world.  Partly that stems from an overlap with the idea of altruism.

Altruism is the idea of putting others’ needs ahead of your own, being able to give without expectation of return.  We do this all the time in our families:  You’ll help out others just because of the close relationship, not because you expect something back.  Well, not exactly true – you expect a certain amount of reciprocation, or trust and closeness will degrade over time.  But that’s not very specific.

And in the case of the commitment to your spouse or kids, you’ll give and give and give.

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