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Giving Really Does Lead

To Receiving

By Bob Burg

Whenever I speak on the topic of Networking, I always make sure to provide my definition of what the term "Networking" means to me.

By and large, the very concept is misunderstood and carries with it a somewhat negative preconceived notion (i.e., shove as many business cards into people's faces as you can while telling them all about yourself and your products or services while attending a one-hour business/social mixer).

I define Networking as "The cultivating of mutually beneficial, give and take, win/win relationships..

As you can see, the emphasis is on the "give" part.

"But wait," the person asks, "Isn't that just Pollyanna-type thinking that doesn't work in the real world?"

Not at all. Giving works.

Let me say it again. Giving works!

And there's nothing "Pollyanna" about it. Giving works both from a practical, as well as spiritual side. Let's look though, at just the practical side.

What I call "The Golden Rule" of Networking is, "All things being equal, people will do business with, and refer business to, those people they know, like and trust."

When we give to - or do something for - someone, we take an important step toward causing those "know, like and trust" feelings toward us in that other person. I've often said that the best way to get business and get referrals is to first give business and give referrals.

Why? Because when someone knows you care about them enough to send business their way, they feel good about you. No, they feel great about you, and desire to give back to you.

Of course, it doesn't have to be actual business that you give. It could be information, whether that information is something that would help them in regard to their business, personal, social, or recreational lives.

Perhaps you suggested a book (or bought them that book) that you know would be of true value to that person.

Maybe you knew their son or daughter was looking for work at a certain company and, knowing someone there who knew the personnel director, you made a call and put in the kind word that helped ensure employment.

It really doesn't matter. Allow me, if you will, to share one example from my personal life. This took place several years after I had begun speaking professionally. There was one corporate client in particular - one with many divisions - I had been trying to "land." However, I could not seem to even get a foot in the door. Not only that, I couldn't even find the door to try and stick my foot in.

It happened that at a Speakers' convention I met a man who had been speaking professionally for quite a while. I struck up a friendship with him and his family and looked forward to seeing them at various events.

During that time, despite the fact that I knew he was quite successful, I never asked him for anything. I did, however, help him as much as I could. Several times, when I was already booked for an engagement on a certain date, I would refer him to the person from the company who had called me.

Having articles published fairly often in magazines, I would refer him as a contributor to the editor. This was appreciated by all parties, of course, and didn't take anything from me in any way. That's one of the great things about giving; it helps everyone and hurts no one.

It was only a couple of years after meeting him that I found out, through a third party, that the client I had been unsuccessfully seeking, was a major client of this speaker friend of mine.

Now, I probably could have come right out and asked him for help but I didn't feel that would be quite right. I didn't want him to feel that because I had gone out of my way for him that he "owed" me anything. I did feel comfortable, however, asking for his advice on how I might myself best pursue them.

I said to him, "I know this is a huge client of yours and am not in any way asking for you to make a connection for me. I'd love to know, though, how would be the best way for me to contact the person myself to at least let them know who I am and how I could help them, so that I get the opportunity to establish and develop a relationship?"

Well, to make a long story end, he would have none of that.

He said, "I'll have the guy who's my main contact call you."

And he did.

And that client, together will all the spin-off engagements I've had wetting that company's umbrella over the years has accounted for several million dollars in sales.

And that was not the first, and certainly not the only time, that giving first has literally paid big financial dividends. It's the way I run my business; it's the way I run my life.

Giving first works.

There is a major caution here, however: You cannot give with the expectation of direct reciprocation or, for that matter, any reciprocation.

This won't work if you are thinking, "Okay, what is he or she going to do for me?"

Not that you might not get something in return. But that something will more than likely be a one-time something, done out of obligation, and not inspiring the "know you, like you, and trust you" feelings toward you from that other person that will elicit this person desiring to see you successful.

No, give because it's the right thing, without the expectation of direct reciprocation, and you'll find this principle to be one of the truest of universal truths.

Bob Burg speaks internationally on the topics of "Business Networking" and "Positive Persuasion Skills." His books "Endless Referrals" and "Winning Without Intimidation" have each sold over 100,000 copies. To subscribe to Bob's free weekly email newsletter, visit www.burg.com


"Love must be the guiding principle in all our giving."

--James A. Decker, Magnificent Decision


By Bob Burg



一般说来,“网络”这个概念总是被人们所误解 —— 很多人先入为主地把一些负面的意义和它联系在一起(例如,在参加一个只有一小时的商务/社交聚会的时候,尽可能多的把你的名片塞到别人手里;滔滔不绝的向别人介绍你的公司和你的产品等)。








当我们向某人布施 —— 或者为其服务 —— 的时候,我们就是在朝向“熟悉、喜爱和信任”迈出了重要的一步。 我常说,获得生意机会和推荐的最好途径,就是给予他人生意机会和推荐。

为什么这样说呢?因为当对方知道你对他很关心,甚至要推荐生意机会给他时,他会对你有良好的印象 —— 更确切的说,是“极好的印象”,并愿意为此而回报于你。




具体“布施”什么并不重要。请允许我与您分享一则我自己经历的一件事情。那时我已经专职从事主题演讲好几年了,有一位我一直想接触的客户 —— 他管理着好几个分支机构 —— 但我却找不到一个 切入的机会;可以说,我连如何去找这样的机会都不知道。


那时,虽然我知道他是一位成功人士,但我从来没有向他索求过什么;我只是在我力所能及的范围内尽力的帮助他。有好几次,我都已经和商家约定好了,但我最后 还是推荐他与商家合作。





















Bob Burg 是跨国专题演讲家,他的主题是关于“商务网络”和“正向说服技巧”。他还著有《无限推荐》和《无胁而胜》,其销量都超过 100,000 册。如果你希望注册他的免费电子周刊,请访问



——James A. Decker, 《高尚的决定》


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