There is rarely something that captures our imagination and excites us more than a new opportunity.
It may come in the form of an email, a text, a call, or unexpectedly in the middle of conversation. But suddenly, you see a clear connection between something somebody wants and what you are personally able to provide.
We quickly recognize opportunity and begin thinking, “How can I take advantage of this? How can I make this a reality?” We take the mental leap forward and imagine ourselves in a future world where that opportunity is reality.
We get attached to this future and then we become afraid of losing this reality that doesn’t even exist yet!
It’s natural to think, “How can I convince them that I am the right person for this job?” or “How can I prove that I know the answer to this problem without giving that answer away and losing the opportunity to create personal value for it?”
But this thinking comes from a world of lack. It’s thinking that creates a win/lose scenario between the two parties and is starting the situation off on a bad foot.
Let me give you an example. If I buy a new house and I need new roofing, I may tell you that I’m looking for someone who is good at roofing to answer a few questions. If you’re handy and you know how to lay a roof, you may get excited by the idea of a new client, and suddenly you need to convince me that you’re the perfect person to do the project.
Your first instinct may be to carefully measure how much you tell me about how to do the roofing. You may be afraid that by sharing specifics about how to do the work, you’re talking yourself out of an opportunity.
But thinking this way is putting your opportunity ahead of creating value for me. It’s showing me that you’re more concerned about getting ahead than solving my problem. It’s a focus on lack rather than abundance.
Instead, I recommend being generous with what you know. Over share with me what you know about fixing the roof, because it shows me a few things:
- You genuinely want to help me and care about my outcome
- You know what you’re talking about
- The answer is harder than I even realized
The third point is often missed. Just because I bought a new house doesn’t mean I want to do all the work personally; maybe I just needed a new roof over my head. By being generous about the work involved, you open the door for me to say, “Wow, that’s way more complicated than I even realized. Can I just pay you to do this for me?”
If the solution is so simple that it can be sorted out and shared within that conversation, chances are I could find it on Google or YouTube anyway and that opportunity never really truly existed.
Lead with generosity and start proving just how valuable you really are.