Give and Take
Read in 11 min.
Listen in 13 min.
Learn the key ideas of the book by Adam Grant

Give and Take

Help others to achieve personal success

Western society seems to reward those who manage to get their hands on as much as they can: you always see individuals in the spotlight who, all on their own, have achieved amazing goals. Yet, thanks in part to social networks and the growing attention paid to certain global issues, the real prestige is now going to the people who bend over backwards for each other. For those who want to achieve more meaningful and enduring success, Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success: Why Helping Others Drives Our Success provides some invaluable insights.

Give and Take
Read in 11 min.
Listen in 13 min.

Success requires 4 ingredients: the least known is the way we form relationships with others

According to popular wisdom, successful people have three things in common: motivation, ability, and a good opportunity to put the first two into practice. In other words, to reach the top you have to rely on a combination of hard work, talent, and luck. However, there is also a fourth factor, which is essential, but often overlooked: the way you relate to other people. 

Every time you interact with a colleague or customer - even if they are only a potential customer - you are faced with a choice: try to get as much value out of them as possible – be it monetary or spiritual - or choose instead to contribute your own value, without worrying about what you will receive in return.

To make things easier, we can divide the world between the takers - all those who do their best to get more than they give - and the givers. We come across the givers much less frequently, especially in the workplace. They always put others' interests before their own, without getting lost in cost-benefit assessments: they are happy to help and do everything they can.

In fact, professionally speaking, there is also a third category of people: those who try to break even, only giving as much as they are sure they will receive.

The most interesting thing – which has been statistically proven - is that those who give are present both at the bottom and the top of the success pyramid. It has been shown that, if on the one hand they improve the conditions of others by sacrificing their own advancement, in doing so, they succeed at building a reputation that inspires others to trust them and, in some cases, these relationships assist them in becoming successful themselves.


The key ideas of "Give and Take"

Success requires 4 ingredients: the least known is the way we form relationships with others
Being knowledgeable is beneficial to everyone, but the connections created by “givers” last longer than those which “takers” exploit for their own advantage
Strong ties form friendships, but weak ties are key components to establishing professional connections
For creatives, the secret is to have the right friends, who give them the freedom to express themselves
Interacting with others without arrogance will allow you to really influence others
Being selfless also means potentially saying "no" so as to protect your success
Altruists are afraid to be recognised, yet their results are best for society as a whole
Take-home message
4books preview

Try 4books Premium for free!