11 May 2016
The best way to destroy an enemy is to make him a friend. That’s a quote from Abraham Lincoln, one that I shared a year ago that popped up on Facebook recently.
It’s a timely reminder, really. Life is too short to concern yourselves with making and keeping enemies. How much greater would life be if no one had any enemies?
In business, having a strong network of people around you is essential to success. Enemies just don’t fit into that formula.
I am a great believer in meeting face to face or picking up the phone to sort out differences, rather than letting either party ruminate and destroy a relationship. It is much better to turn that enemy into an ally.
Of course, the time will come when you disagree with someone, when someone steps on your toes, or you on theirs and it is all too easy to burn bridges, to start a war with competitors and to wreak havoc to be a ‘disruptor’, but you never know what is over the next hill. You never know what is around the next corner and who you will encounter or need the help of. Surely, it’s better to face what lies ahead for the future with plenty of allies?
We meet people for a reason and we often have no idea what that reason is until our paths cross much later down the line.
Ultimately you can’t stop people from disliking you, but you can do your best to not become an enemy. When you help someone, you create a friend. When you share an experience, you make a friend. When you are kind, you make a friend.
As is often the case, I believe that it all comes down to time. To taking the time to listen, to taking the time to pause before reacting negatively and to taking the time together to make memories.