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Lessons from T. Boone Pickens

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Whether you’re a sole proprietor or part of a multi-billion dollar business, the key to success is talking to other people. T. Boone Pickens has built companies worth billions of dollars, and suggests that if you want to work smarter, then the first step ought to be talking to other people.
Not texting, not tweeting, or otherwise engaging on social media. Talking, in real conversation.
T. Boone Pickens could have been a reporter, people say, for how he constantly walks the beat and asks questions, to everybody, about everything. Whether you’re talking to customers, employees, or anybody else, you never know who you’ll learn from. You never know where the next great idea will come from, or what little phrase might inspire you to make a creative leap.
There is no substitute for talking to other people. In business, people need to sit down and talk to each other. No one knows everything, not the leader or anybody else. Different people know the most about different things, and when you’re looking for answers to all the questions you face in business, you need to bring in everybody and get the best information from all the right people. If it’s just the leader thinking, then you’ll make a lot of errors, because nobody has all the right answers. But together, we can find them.
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Talking to and engaging with people also helps to make everybody feel more like a part of the team. You have to involve everybody, because the number one most important factor in any team, whether a sports team or a business team, is respect. Treat everybody with respect.

Published: March 14, 2014
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