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Top 12 Ways to Being a Mensch (aka – a good professional) September 11, 2011

Posted by willhlaw in Administrivia.
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Enchantment by Guy Kawasaki

Paraphrased from, http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/the-world/article/how-to-be-a-mensch-in-business-guy-kawasaki and taken from the author, Guy Kawasaki’s book, Enchanment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions.

Mensch is a German word for “human being”, but its Yiddish connotation far exceeds this definition. If you are a mensch, you are honest, fair, kind, and transparent, no matter whom you’re dealing with and who will ever know what you did. Bruna Martinuzzi, author of The Leader as a Mensch: Become the Kind of Person Others Want To Follow, compiled a list of ten ways to achieve menschdom. Here is Guy’s summary of her insights:

  1. Always act with honesty.
  2. Treat people who have wronged you with civility.
  3. Fulfill your unkept promises from the past.
  4. Help someone who can be of absolutely no use to you.
  5. Suspend blame when something goes wrong and ask, “What can we learn?”
  6. Hire people who are as smart as or smarter than you and give them opportunities for growth.
  7. Don’t interrupt people; don’t dismiss their concerns offhand; don’t rush to give advice’ don’t change the subject. Allow people their moment.
  8. Do no harm in anything you undertake.
  9. Don’t be too quick to shoot down others’ ideas.
  10. Share your knowledge, expertise, and best practices with others.

Guy also adds two more ways to achieve menschdom:

  • Focus on goodwill. Mensches focus on goodwill – that is, positive actions that make the world a better place. People distrust those who focus on improving their own position and who denigrate others.
  • Give people the benefit of the doubt. People are good until proven bad, which is only proven after several bad experiences.

I have a looong way to become a Mensch, but I think these are excellent principals to live by and do business by.

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