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Here, here!!! Awesome post!

Eric Sullwold

Truly said from the heart. I have trouble understanding the nature of tearing down. For me the business is personnel. I do business with friends who I have come to know through my meetings and cold calls. To tear someone down only weakens your position.
Thank you for reminding us all.

Steve Wahls

That's right. That is the message and what I want to communicate about my business.

Linda Davenport

AMEN, AMEN and AMEN!!!!!!!

And thank you very much for making the end of my day uplifting.

Linda Davenport
Clarksville, Va.


Hi Steve,

Ever since I first heard you say "People do business with people" it has struck a cord with me and I've noticed it to be very true. There are so many people that I love to do business with, and pay more because of the "people."

However, I wonder if this is a business-to-business rule only? In a business-to-customer scenario, it still could be a rule - but I don't know if it ALWAYS is anymore? Those people who shop at Walmart, buy online, stop by an ATM machine, rent a movie from RedBox etc... seem like they are actually choosing to do business more with the "company" than the people. Even if there is a person in the transaction (ie: I don't know too many people that go to Walmart to deal with a specific employee).

I still think your post is very valid, and think it in some ways still applies to how a company can present itself (polite and as if it is speaking to its customers in a personal way), but I do think there is a slight distinction that in a business-to-customer market, people do not always do business with people and may choose to do business with a "company" that offers the customer something more favorable than a relationship (like cheap prices, cheaper rates, more convenience, better information, unique product, etc.).


I come from a small town myself and I truly miss those values and attitudes. Thank you for taking the time to write this article and remind all of us that we are still dealing with people. I have gained a lot of business practicing those Midwest values.

Dale Farkas

I totally agree with everything you've said. No matter the technology of our time people and our relationships to them still count.

Perhaps I can offer a useful daily technique for preserving one's humanity and humility in a digital age where individual people are becoming minimalized (to coin a new word) and the old rules seem to matter less and less.

Personally, I strive to make each day of my life a "three mitzvah day." (For those born outside the New York area a "mitzvah" is a good deed done without any expectation of a reward.)

My goal is to do three kind things for other people. These acts must be my personal choice and not forced upon me.

This may sound difficult. Yet, every day I come across situations where I'm able to reach this triple goal.

I think that doing good deeds for others is especially easy for people who have been blessed by owning their own businesses. We have the power and wealth to easily help others.

If I see a homeless person panhandling on the street I will cheerfully give him or her money. But, more important than money, I will give that person a smile and say something to them that will reinforce his worth as a human being. (I can only imagine how terrible it must be to be an "invisible" human being in our society.)

If I see a person has a problem, even if he or she doesn't recognize it himself, I will try to provide a solution that will improve his life.

Recognizing older people or reinforcing the self-worth of a child with a kind word is a good deed, in itself.

When I get to work I strive to provide benefit to my customers, a feeling of value and worth to my staff and respect to everyone I speak to. (Sometimes this can be tough in a harried business environment.)

I insist that everyone on my staff act civilly and respectfully to our customers and each other. Where conflicts occur I use humor and leadership to smooth the rifts. I lead by example.

Our newsletters and promotions are all designed with the primary purpose of providing benefit to the readers, customers and prospects. (I'll be forwarding a very personalized one to you I wrote last week about taking pictures at theme parks.)

At the end of every day I evaluate that day's events. It's pretty rare that I haven't accomplished my "three mitzvahs."

It's important that one never expect to see a specific return on this "investment." There are days when no good deed goes unpunished.

But, I have found in my 67 years that what goes around really does come around. Somehow if you do good for others, good...and success...will come your way. (I guess that's the opposite of "nice guys come in last.")

From my perspective, I believe that I've attained a greater level of success and enjoy more happiness in any given day than I am entitled to. Sharing my blessings with others through three acts of kindness is a small price to pay.

Thanks, Steve, for setting the bar high and giving us your valuable insights and philosopy. I think that for most of us who read your blogs you are preaching to the choir. There are a lot of good people in this world.

Best regards,


Rich Erschik

Amen Steve.


Many truisms in your article point to most of us interacting with respect and would like respect in return. I have thought for a long time that you make your own luck (Labor Under Correct Knowledge) in personal relationships as well as in business. Thank you for your positive thoughts -- people do enjoy doing business with people.


Does anyone remember Dale Carnegie How to Win Friends and Influence People? This is all good stuff. Thank you all for adding your thoughts and insight.

Eric Sullwold

I am responding to the comments made by Dale and his reference to "Mitzvahs". In my own personal life I have used the term RAK which means "Random Acts of Kindness". Dale as you so eloquently stated these are done out of the caring we have for our fellow man/woman. The only level of satisfaction is from the thought that we have made an effort to improve or help one's lot.
Thank you for bringing that thought to the forefront. I think as we get old we tend to change our perspective from climbing to the top to helping people to achieve a better life.


Eric Sullwold


This is a great insight...

Brenda Haley

This is one of your best posts of all I have read. Amen, Amen, Amen!

Thanks for the reminders, the refreshing insights and the #1 Rule. Love it and so very true.

Brenda Haley



truer words were never spoken!
I think most common people feels the same - but you have manged to formulate it so beautifully and so precisely. I will share this with all my friends!

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