Bob Burg tells us in his book ¨The Go-Giver¨ the story of a young man called Joe who strives for success. Joe is a true go-getter and has everything one can wish for, however, he still has a problem. He is struggling to make a sale by the end of the quarter and asks Pindar, a wise Old man for help.

Pindar ends up teaching him five valuable laws commonly called ¨The Five Laws of Stratospheric Success¨

The Law of Value: “Your true worth is determined by how much more you give in value than you take in payment”

Although you might think this law seems counterintuitive at first and even paradoxical, the key to grasping it is in what we define as value. We are not talking about a price or compensation, nor it is equal to your salary. Value is defined as “The property or aggregate properties of a thing that renders it useful or desirable.”.

In the book they expose this principle by comparing three types of restaurant. The first one tries to give enough food and service to barely justify the money. The good restaurant strives to give the most quantity and quality for the money it takes. But the best restaurant strives to provide a higher quality of food and service than money could pay for. The first two may or may not survive, but the great restaurant will not only survive, it will thrive.

Value is value, not price, and consistently over delivering value is the cornerstone for creating a culture of excellence.

The Law of Compensation: ¨Your income is determined by how many people you serve and how well you serve them.¨

As the common saying goes, ¨If you want to make a billion dollars find a problem that a billion people suffer and solve it for them.¨ This principle relies on the basis that in order to receive the most income we need to expand the amount of people we serve.

In the book this law is exemplified by a lady that made an excellent coffee to Pindar and got encouraged to start a business and offer her gift to the world. After working for a few months she managed to package her secret recipe and send it to millions of people. By increasing the amount of people she was able to offer her great coffee she was able to start a business and magnify her income.

One way Bob Burg recommends us to apply this principle is by being an ¨Intrapreneur¨within our companies, by creating ways of touching the lives of as many people company wide as possible to add to their daily experience. These are some examples:

  • Find out what others need and determine how to help them get it.
  • Send handwritten thank-you notes (on real paper, not e-mails) to people in other departments have who provided you with timely information or assistance.
  • Take a solution-oriented approach to helping people in other departments who need your help.

The Law of Influence:Your influence is determined by how abundantly you place other people’s interest first.”

This is one of the laws that has been around for decades but it still seems it´s one of the hardest for most of us to follow. The golden rule in business says that ¨All things being equal, people will do business with and refer business to those people they know, like, and trust.¨ This means that there´s no other way, or a more powerful method of eliciting feelings in others than by focusing to put their interests first.

The Law of Authenticity:The most valuable gift you have to offer is yourself”

Throughout the book, Burg mentions that ¨The most significant way of adding value to other´s lives is by honoring our own nature.¨. By keeping our word and by being genuine and not trying to be someone you´re not is one of the best gifts we can offer to other people. People can actually tell when you´re not being honest and you can´t truly give to another person unless you are being fully authentic.

The Law of Receptivity: “The key to effective giving is to stay open to receiving.¨

After performing all the previous laws we must have this one as strong as the others in our mindset. This is what joins them all together. It states that receiving is good, actually it´s great because it´s a natural result of giving.

We must always be open to receiving as we also give throughout our lives. Every challenge we face or opportunity we receive is a gift we are being given to improve ourselves and improve our lives.

Closing with one phrase from Bob Burg:

“All the great fortunes in the world have been created by men and women who had a greater passion for what they were giving – their product, service or idea – than for what they were getting. And many of those great fortunes have been squandered by others who had a greater passion for what they were getting than what they were giving.”

Further Reading:

  • Givers & Takers by Adam Grant
  • The Go-Giver by Bob Burg

Andres Crucetta is originally from Venezuela, currently based in Texas. He writes about personal growth, education and Latin American issues through his blog: The Weekly Acumen and in Quora.