John and I are always delighted to receive the many emails from readers who share with us how utilizing the Five Laws of Stratospheric Success has helped them add value to the lives of others, and created more prosperity for themselves and their loved ones, as well.
Of course, while a Go-Giver doesn’t “give to get” but “gives to give,” they also know that doing this creates a benevolent context for success; the powerful seeds of goodwill they’ve cultivated will come back to them many times over, in the form of direct business and referrals.
Yet we also receive letters that, while well-intended, proceed from a false premise, and a potentially dangerous one at that:
“Being a Go-Giver means giving yourself and your product or service away for free, without any concern for making a profit.”
Folks, it absolutely does not mean that!
There’s a time and place to give things away for free. Sometimes, it’s a smart marketing strategy: give people a sample, and they’ll be in a better position to decide if they want to buy. (John and I provide a free download of Chapter 1 of each of our books for just that reason.)
That’s not being a Go-Giver, and it’s not not being a Go-Giver. It just is what it is.
Being a Go-Giver, in and of itself, has nothing to do with giving things away for free.
Being a Go-Giver means you tap into the Five Laws shared in the book. You provide more in value than you take in payment; you touch many lives with that value; you put other people’s interests first; you operate from a foundation of authenticity; and you allow yourself to receive.
That last one – receiving – is often the point in all this that gets forgotten.
A Twitter friend wrote me the other day saying that a customer of hers sent her a nasty email complaining that she was charging too much for her product. My friend had decided that, “in the Go-Giver spirit,” she would not charge the person at all.
“DON’T YOU DARE DO THAT!…”
… is what I wanted to write back, but I didn’t. I was a bit gentler and tactful. I explained that perhaps she was confusing being a Go-Giver with being a doormat or whipping post.
I asked if, with her normal price, she was providing significantly more in value than what she was charging, while still making a significant profit. She said, “Yes, absolutely.”
In that case, I suggested, she was already being a Go-Giver. She simply needed to effectively communicate that value to her customer. She agreed, and that’s exactly what she did.
Another case in point: Jennifer Ledbetter, aka PotPieGirl, recently promoted our book on her affiliate marketing site, and one of her readers upbraided her for including an affiliate link, as if there were something somehow wrong with her making a profit — when earning a profit through affiliate marketing is the whole point of her site!
It can be so easy to fall into the trap of this false dilemma (what we call in the new book a “treacherous dichotomy”) that says you are either in business to serve others or you’re in it for the money.
As if one excluded the other. It doesn’t — no more than giving excludes receiving.
Please don’t buy into this treacherous dichotomy, this guilt-tripped dualism. It’s a bad sale, and enough people are probably trying to sell you on it already — don’t do it to yourself.
In my next post, we’ll look at a second false premise regarding the term Go-Giver and how it can result in people trying to guilt you into living very unproductively. And we’ll discuss the solution, as well.