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Power Relationships: 26 Irrefutable Laws for Building Extraordinary Relationships by Jerold Panas, Andrew Sobel

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24

Start an Epidemic

Close your eyes for a moment.

Picture a boxcar. You know, the car from a freight train. With the sliding doors. Okay. Now think of that one freight car with sheets hanging from the ceiling to divide it into rooms.

That's how Mannie Jackson grew up. That's where he was born and lived through grade school. Even more remarkable, there were 12 family members who lived with Mannie in that freight car. Twelve!

This is a true story. It is far too remarkable to have been made up.

Mannie today is considered among the 30 highest net-worth African Americans in the country. And ranked among the most influential. He serves on a number of corporate boards.

His net worth is in the high millions and growing every year. He plans on giving away $100 million to charity.

It's a remarkable journey. Boxcar to Boardrooms. That is, by the way, the title of the book he wrote to describe his bold pilgrimage. It's a story worth telling. He didn't read a book until he was 12. There were no books in the segregated school he attended.

What he soon discovered was that he could jump. Boy, could he jump.

He could jump higher than anyone in the school. And somehow, he simply seemed to stay up and float in the air without coming down. It's easy, he told me. You just jump as high as you can…and don't come down.

Basketball was his greatest joy in life. Even early on, he showed a talent. Those high jumps and gliding in air. But as a kid, he wasn't allowed to even watch high school basketball with ...

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