Want to help someone? Shut up and listen!


When you want to help someone and implement a solution it is very important to “Go to the Gemba” see the real situation and ask the people involved on the ground what the best solution is. This applies equally to Ernesto Sirolli’s story of the hippo’s eating the Italian tomatoes as it does to any workplace. The people that actually do the work are the people that often know what the solutions to problems are but many times people in authority don’t actually ask the right people. There is often a preconceived idea that people with the highest qualifications or  the highest paid managers in the company will have the best answers but if they don’t actually ask the people doing the work they will often make incorrect assumptions.

An example is one food manufacturing place I was involved with that was having major problems with contamination of the product. They spent many thousands of dollars trying to figure out the source of the contamination. They put in special sensors and spent large amounts of money on stronger and stronger chemicals to kill any contamination. Finally they employed a “Lean consultant” to try and figure out the problem. This person went to the factory floor and spent 24 hours watching all the processes. When one section of the factory closed down for the night the cleaners came in. One of the cleaners went around with a cloth and cleaned the insides of all the vats. He went from vat to vat and cleaned, with the same cloth. Lo and behold the problem was solved by someone going to the actual place of work and watching and talking to people. Much cheaper than the thousands of dollars that had already been spent trying to solve the problem.

When you watch this video you will see the same concepts in place. Ernesto Sirolli talks about the failure of the projects he had been involved in when he first went to Zambia as an aid worker. One of the first projects he was involved with was to teach the Zambian people he was working with to grow Italian tomatoes and zucchinis from his homeland. The local soil was very fertile and he couldn’t understand why the Zambian people weren’t taking advantage of their soil to grow their own food. The local people weren’t interested in his efforts to grow gardens and in fact he had to pay them to work in the gardens. He talks about how he, and the other aid workers tended to think less of the local people for not recognising the value in what they were trying to teach them. When the tomatoes were becoming nice and ripe and were just about ready to be picked, one night a herd of hippos came out of the river and ate every tomato. It was then that the local people explained that this was why they didn’t have agriculture.

It is very arrogant to assume that you know what is best for someone else. Ernesto learns that the very best principle of aiding someone is that “If someone doesn’t want to be helped then the best thing you can do is leave them alone”. There are any number of people that do want to be helped so just move on.

It is far better to respond to requests rather than push your ideas onto someone else. Find out what the other person wants to do. You want to find out what the passion of the other person is and what they need to move forward with their own personal growth. Each person is on their own life journey and you have no right to push your own beliefs onto someone else, no matter how right you think you are. When you recognise this concept and start working within it this is when you will start to experience true success in your life.

This same principle applies when you are trying to build an online business. You need to find what the passion is of the people you are working with to find out how to help them with what they want and need. Shut up and listen to them and learn how to be a “Servant leader”.

If you want to work with entrepreneurs you need to meet their needs. You need to offer them confidentiality or they won’t even talk to you. They have to believe in your honesty and your integrity. You need to offer them exceptional service so they will understand that they will be supported. You must have a fantastic product and marketing and they need to believe that the company is stable and financially sound. Well we certainly cover all of these bases with Karatbars.

It is almost impossible to get one person, or company that can make a fantastic product, have exceptionally effective marketing and can look after the back-end financial base of the company. This is why you must have a team to be truly successful. Again we certainly have this with our Protection Through Gold team.

If you want be successful in your Karatbars business, or indeed in any other business, you need to work with entrepreneurs and you must find out what they want in order to attract them.


To become part of our team and watch many “servant leaders” at work join us at http://tinyurl.com/KBFWG-JandL

For more helpful tips on creating cashflow to improve your lifestyle revisit this blog regularly, http://freedomwithcashflow.com, or for more information visit our other  websites http://freedomwithcashflow.com/karatbars/, https://www.youtube.com/user/FreedomWithCashflow, or https://www.facebook.com/FreedomWithCashflow.

Alternatively visit our other websites about balancing your life,  http://wheeloflifeblog.com or http://wheeloflifebook.com and purchase our book “The Wheel of Life’s 8 Keys to Success”.