The Fred Factor Summary
I have to say this is one of the greatest book for whoever wants to become successful and meaningful in their life. So many wisdom in the small book, I read a few times trying to absorb as much as I can in the book. The Golden rule of the life is treating others as I’d like to be treated.
The following is what I learned from the book and also the summary of the knowledge I feel is going to be the guides to my life:
1. Everyone makes a difference. Nobody can prevent you from choosing to be exceptional. At the end of the day, the only question that matter is, what kind of difference did you make? Ultimately, the more valuable you are to others – the more value you create in your work or your interactions with others – the more value will eventually flow toward you.
everyone makes a difference every day — To make a difference means affecting another person, group, or situation. It is nearly impossible to remain neutral as your journey through each day. Paying attention to others, giving them the respect they deserve, and politely serving them makes a positive difference.
Three Difference-Making Strategies:
- Identify When you’ll make a difference
- Target the people to whom you’ll make a difference
- Be the difference. — A little thought and reflection will quickly help you to see the difference you can make in any activity and event. We must make time in our schedules to determine how we can change our ordinary actions into extraordinary ones.
One thing seems common to all human beings: a passion for significance.
Do the right thing for the right reason — You go about doing the right thing, knowing that the doing is its own reward, you’ll be fulfilled whether or not you get recognition from others. When reward or recognition comes, it will be icing on the cake.
2. Success is built on relationships
Relationship building is the most important objective because the quality of the relationship determines the quality of the product or service. Remember you are dealing with human beings no matter what your product or services are.
Become students of social psychology. They understand that strong relationships create loyalty and are the basis of partnerships and teamwork. Remember that the quality of a relationship is related directly to the amount of time invested in it. Make sure you give some of your best time to your relationships.
Customers don’t have relationships with organizations; they form relationships with individuals. Passionate employees constantly show their commitment to customers. They do this by demonstrating their passion about what they do.
Principles to improve your relationships:
- Be Real — Always do your best at being yourself. Sure, you should aim to improve, try new things and add values. But let these actions come out of who you really are, what you truly believe in, and the things you are committed to.
The prerequisite for relationship building is trust. At its most basic level, trust is built on believing that people are who they represent themselves to be.
- Be interested (not just interesting). It may be true that interesting people attract attention, but I believe that interested people attract appreciation.
- Be a better listen. people are flattered when you make an effort to get to know them and seek information on how to serve them better. Understanding and appreciating what they want increases the value of what you can provide for them.
- Be Empathic. The need to be understood is one of the highest human needs, but too often people who know us either don’t care or don’t make the effort to understand how we really feel.
- Be honest. Say what you’ll do, and do what you say. In other words, don’t make promises you can’t keep. Don’t create expectations you can’t fulfill. Avoid overrepresenting and overpromising.
- Be helpful. Little things make a big difference. Lots of small things cumulatively make a huge difference.
- Be prompt. Time is the one thing many people have far less of than money. Helping them save time by being prompt and efficient is a gift of great value.
Transactional interactions focus primarily on results, sometimes even at the cost of relationships. People who value results over relationships are often called “direct”. That means they go directly for the outcome, making others feel devalued and even used.
Relational interactions emphasize the importance of how people are treated in the process of achieving results. This type of interaction doesn’t ignore the outcome, but it does recognize that the means are an important part of the end.
3. You must continually create value for others, and it doesn’t have to cost a penny. The most critical skill is the ability to create value for customers and colleagues without spending money to do it. The challenge is to outthink rather than to outspend the competition. The trick is to replace money with imagination, to substitute creativity for capital.
How to be a person of incredible value to others?
- Tell the truth. Truth is often so scarce today that we assign an even higher value to it than we did in the past.
- Practice personality power.
- Attract through artistry. Not because appearances are more important than substance, but because they count. Something of great value unpleasantly presented loses value. Conversely, we increase the value of things when we make them aesthetically pleasing.
- Meet needs in advance. This is the power of anticipation. Anticipating how you can be of service while your neighbors are gone is a magnanimous gesture that will create great value.
- Add “good stuff”.
- Enthusiasm. Enthusiasm makes ordinary events, processes, services or interactions extraordinary.
- Humor. You don’t have to take yourself so seriously.
- Subtract “bad stuff”.
- Mistakes. Solve problems for people even if we weren’t responsible for the mistake.
- Irritation and frustration
- Simplify. If you want to be of great service to others, use your knowledge and expertise to help them understand what appears to be a complex and overwhelming situation.
- Improve. To make better, to multiply existing value. To do the common thing uncommonly well. Always looking for ways, big and small, to improve the quality of their work and their interactions.
- Surprise others. A thoughtful gesture from a nice person had totally surprised us and lifted our spirits.
- Entertain Others. People love to be entertained, We pay closer attention, learn faster, and are more engaged when we’re entertained.
4. You can reinvent yourself regularly. I believe that no matter what job you hold, what industry you work in, or where you live, every morning you wake up with a clean slate. You can make your business, as well as your life, anything you choose it to be.
No matter what happened yesterday, today is a new day. Today you can begin the process of becoming who you want to be. If you hope to keep growing and going, all you need to do is seize the opportunity to reinvent yourself. You accomplish this by daily actions – big and small – that show your commitment to a new, improved version of yourself. Otherwise you’ll fall behind in a competitive world.
The best way to grow your value is to grow yourself. Become a sponge of ideas. So often we live your lives on autopilot, unable to distinguish between activity and accomplishment. The more your grow as a person, the more you’ll have to share with others. You increase in stature as you increase your mental, spiritual, and physical capabilities. As you grow you’ll make new connections with people and ideas that will enable you to become a mater craftsman of value.
Having a compelling reason — passion or purpose — to become more Fred-like is what will stir your motivation.
If you want to reinvent yourself and improve for the future, spend some time reflecting on the past.
Buy a small journal. Jot down the answers to the questions in your heart. Also write down what you remember or learn each day. capture and capitalize on the ideas that too often stay hidden in the rich storehouse of your mind.
IQ — Implementation Quotient, IQ represents the difference between having a good idea and implementing it. How many good ideas die for lack of action and followthrough on your part? One way to improve your IQ is to write down good ideas as they come to you, then put them on your daily to-do list.
Good ideas are all around you. Seek out what the best people are doing. Watch and learn. Then adapt and apply. While the ideas you observe may not be an exact fit for you, with some tailoring you can go beyond simply duplicating to becoming truly innovative.
Turing the ordinary into extraordinary happens one act at a time. Start by doing what you know you can do. As you continue reinventing yourself, supplement your one-a-day strategy by doing more. But build on that simple practice.
- one thoughtful remark to a loved one each day to enrich a relationship
- one exceptional performance a day to get the right kind of attention form your boss
- one unexpected act of service a day to turn the life of another in a positive direction
It’s a lot more productive – and fun – to compare and compete against yourself. The goal is ongoing improvement. Reinvention is positive change. Continually look for ways to take your game to the next level.
Is it possible that you are making significant impressions on others and don’t even know it? We need to be conscious not only of the primary effects of the things we do but of the secondary consequences, which are a ripple effect that touches far more people that those in our immediate presence.
They distinguish themselves not by the results they’ve achieved, but by how they’ve affected and touched others. Their efforts inspire, both directly or indirectly. That’s one of the best reasons I know of for continually seeking to reinvent ourselves.
How can you develop Freds?
- Let them find you — If you really want your company to be world-class, it must become the kind of place that attract Freds. People want to work in organizations and for bosses who offer them a change and a chance.
- Discover Dormant Freds — Pay attention. Watch for people who do things with flair.
- Hire Freds — questions to ask: Who are you heroes? Why? Why would anyone do more than necessary? Tell me three things that you think would delight most customers/Clients/Consumers. What’s the coolest thing that’s happened to you as a customer? what is service?
Reward — We don’t get the behavior we hope for, beg for, or demand. We get the behavior we reward. It’s a matter of rewarding the right behavior and using the right rewards.
When you don’t see much meaning in what you do, you won’t bring much value to what you do.When people feel that their contributions are unappreciated, they will stop trying. And when that happens, innovation dies.
Implement your reward strategy:
- Make sure all of your team members know that they are making an important contribution or have the ability to do so.
- Tell your team members what kind of difference they are making. Be specific. Cite increased production, sales and hires, Commendations from outside sources; insightful suggestions; increased motivation and enthusiasm — anything and everything that applies.
- Be sure that positive feedback about their efforts is a rule, not an exception.
- Create an award
- Get the leader of your organization to personally recognize the Freds. Ask him or her to send a note or to make a phone call letting the employee know the contribution has been noticed and appreciated. Written as well as spoken frequently in public and in private — is one of the best rewards.
- Find examples everywhere. Record in writing all ideas and examples. If you run across them in your reading, highlight them. Clip out newspaper articles. Put all these examples in the Fred file. Nothing inspires people more than an example directly experienced or indirectly learned from a real-life incident.
- Dissecting and Debriefing is a way of accomplishing four things:
- Identify the specific good idea behind the example — How did that make you feel? What makes that example cool? what makes it an example of what not to do? What’s the basic idea here?
- Adapting the idea to your situation. Would that work for you? How could it work for you? What would you have to do, or do differently, to benefit from this example?
- Looking for ways to improve it. What would make this idea even better? What would you do differently? What would make our customers or clients appreciate this even more?
- Opportunities for application. When could you use this idea? Where? With whom? When will you start?
- Teach Miracle Working — Teach the Fred Factor as a form of daily miracle working.
- Pull, Don’t push. Invite people to join you. Use your enthusiasm and commitment to gain their participation and involvement. The most powerful tool you have for spreading the Fred Factor throughout your organization is your own behavior. The example of your life and the effect it has on others. “You teach what you know, but you reproduce who you are”.
- Inspire, but don’t intimidate. Your example should be down-to-earth and doable.
- Involve. It’s far more effective than suggesting or asking
- Initiate. Take Action boldly and quickly. You are the spark that sets others on fire when you initiate.
- Improvise. In the process of improvising — trying stuff to see what works — you’ll probably improve your job or relationship or situation. Even if you don’t, at least you won’t be bored.
Whom do we most remember? We remember those who lived to serve others. We are most impressed and affected not by what people gain but by what they gave; not by what they conquer but by what they contribute.
The most important thing is love of others. A stable, meaningful generosity of spirit that enables us to do things for others — those we know and those we don’t — because at base level we choose to give of ourselves.
So here’s my working definition of generosity of spirit: It is the commitment to treat a person with dignity and kindness regardless of how you feel about him or her. What makes any act extraordinary is doing it with heart. What make any life extraordinary is living it with love. That’s the secret of the Fred Factor.
Hope you feel this summary is helpful to you! Let me know what you think after you read the Fred Factor.
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