How Can I Help?

“Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking, ‘What’s in it for me?’”

Brian Tracy, motivational speaker and author

In the previous chapter, you learned how you can seek and leverage the insights of others to achieve remarkable things. Now I want to impart how you can offer help to others in the pursuit of creating a vital enterprise, delivering high performance, and producing extraordinary results.

I often say that the idea “leadership that works” is steeped in the spirit of “How can I help?” In many cases, that spirit refers to saying the actual phrase, the four words “How can I help?” But in a larger sense, it speaks to a mentality, an inclination to be of service, that should inform how you show up for others from moment to moment.

A Life or Death Lesson

On the Friday afternoon of the Fourth of July weekend in 2009, I was on the New Jersey Turnpike returning home from another bustling day of activities as CEO of Campbell Soup Company. My wife was away in Washington, D.C., helping our daughter move into her new apartment. In the backseat of the car, I was dozing off with my seatbelt on, at the end of a busy week. We were going fast, between 70 and 80 miles per hour, when my driver rammed into the back of a large truck that was stopped near an exit.

Fortunately, the driver’s air bag deployed and he escaped unharmed. I was not so lucky; I narrowly escaped with my life. Due to the force of ...

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