Dr. Misner’s guest Michael Drew has helped create 74 bestsellers through his company Promote a Book, Inc., including some of Dr. Misner’s own. The topic of today’s podcast is his latest book, Pendulum: How Past Generations Shape Our Present and Predict Our Future, which explores the way networking groups like BNI are positioned to grow massively over the next 30 years. Reasons for this include:
- Society increasingly desires to work together for the common good. BNI exists for the benefit of all members, not for any one member.
- Society’s need for community is so great that it demands new technology to create this. BNI creates community, and now has BNI Connect to help.
- A “Me” cycle is plastic. A “We” cycle is authentic. BNI members help each other find people who already need the products and services they provide.
- Today’s customers are looking for relationships, not transactions. BNI is all about relationships.
BNI members can get the book for only $7.00 (the cost of shipping and handling) at penduluminaction.com/bni/. (This offer is good for a limited time only, so if you find this episode two years from now and the link doesn’t work, don’t be surprised.)
Brought to you by Networking Now.
Complete Transcript of BNI Podcast Episode 280
Hello everyone and welcome back to The Official BNI Podcast brought to you by NetworkingNow.com, which is the leading site on the net for networking downloadables. I am Priscilla Rice, and I am coming to you from Live Oak Recording Studio in Berkeley, CA. I am joined on the phone today by the Founder and Chairman of BNI, Dr. Ivan Misner. Hello Ivan. How are you and where are you?
I am doing great. I am actually in town for a week or two preparing for a big international conference which is in a couple of weeks. I have a guest with us today, Michael Drew. Mike founded an organization called Promote a Book so he could work directly with authors and help them spread their message. He has been in it his entire career. He has become the world’s most successful promoter, helping launch 74 consecutive books onto the best sellers lists. Many of them #1 titles. Several of them are mine. Mike has helped get a number of my books onto best sellers lists, starting with Masters of Networking, Masters of Success, Truth or Delusion, Networking Like a Pro, and others. Mike has a long track record of helping authors get their books to best sellers lists.
He has also honed his skills with respected publishers like Bart Press, Entrepreneur Magazine, Longstreet Press, Thomas Nelson Publishers, and many others. Beyond helping other authors sell well, Michael has benefited from these other authors’ insights into the social trends and he has observed up close the shifting trends of the dynamics of society, which resulted in his newest book, which is a topic of our discussion today.
His newest book is Pendulum, and it is really about the topic that we are going to cover today, the concept of we versus me. Mike, it’s a real pleasure to have you on the podcast today. Thanks.
Hey Ivan, thanks for having me.
The first question I want to start with is why are networking groups like BNI positioned to grow massively over the next 30 years, based on the research that you did for the book, Pendulum? The subtitle, by the way is “How Past Generations Shape and Predict Our Future.” How are networking groups positioned?
The great thing about networking is that- and organizationally, BNI- is that it is positioned for the current cultural cycle that we are in. Roy H Williams, my co-author, and I, researched the last 3000 years of recorded western civilization, looking for a patten in how society changes its mindset. What we discovered is that we have transitioned from me, the individual, to the concept of we, the community. The great thing based on the research, and from our experience, is that society today is not looking to promote the concept of one individual being better than the group, but rather, society wants to work together for the common good.
Organizations like BNI that build during these cycles are perfectly positioned to leverage this cultural mind shift into we come into BNI as an organization. Each individual chapter works together, not for the benefit of any one member, but for the benefit of all members. All members of BNI have the opportunity to refer each other. Everyone in the chapter is working together for the common good. Again, it’s the concept of givers gain. By giving to the group, it is going benefit every member of the group, including the individual who is giving.
BNI as an organization is best positioned to be exceptionally successful over the course of the next 30 years. I really expect BNI to explode. I am sure you are seeing that, both here in North America and worldwide.
Yeah, it is growing worldwide. No doubt about it, and in the recession we have grown substantially . Since times were tough, people were looking for creative ways to grow their business, so the organization is growing. With BNI, I have certainly said that the sum of the whole is greater than the individual parts, which is kind of what you were saying with me versus me. It’s the mentality of working together to get amazing results.
Absolutely no question about it. I think that’s whole concept with givers gain as well, that the individual parts can contribute more to the whole than they can even for themselves. This is why it is the we in society that is going to succeed. Interestingly enough, people want to say that technology might be changing society with social media. What we actually argue in the book is that it’s not technology that is changing society but rather society has demanded new communication tools like social media to be able to create community.
What BNI does is it creates community for businesses in a local area. That is why I think that BNI is going to succeed and just grow exponentially over the course of the next three years.
We certainly do that on the face to face element, no question about it. And I know you are aware of the online technology project. We have BNI Connect, which has created a social media platform for our members to carry that face to face onto the internet as well. So if you are a member and are listening to this and haven’t heard about BNI Connect, contact your director because we have a social medial platform that is open to our members. And most countries are now on it. Take a look at that. BNIconnect.com.
So let’s go a little deeper on the concept of me versus we. How have the go-it-alone, exceptionalism, not community based business models begun failing over the last few years? How has that failed over the last 10 years?
It’s interesting. If we look back a the previous cycle of “me”, which was from 1960 to 2003, if you look back at how society functioned and what happened in business, you can see how we were able to create inflation within the marketplace. There is a reason that people refer to the 80′s as the plastic 80′s. In a “me” cycle, individuals believe we can be bigger and better than who we are.
But in a “we” cycle, our currencies are authenticity and transparency. When we move into a “we” cycle like we did in 2003, and we start looking at the inflation that is created in a “we” cycle, we always move into a recessionary or depressionary time period. Harry Dun, Jr’s books talk about a depression every 80 years. In modern economics, it has always happened every eight years. It actually aligns perfectly with the shift from “me” to “we”.
The other thing we look at in the current business and financial problems that we have in North America and throughout the world, and especially in western society, it’s based upon the fact that in a “me” mindset, we are taught- business owners- to push and be bigger and better than who we are and we are taught to push others to be bigger and better than who we are.
When we move into a “we” cycle, the youth of society is the momentum that creates this desire and call for community coming together. Those business owners that were trained to build their businesses in a “me” cycle, it takes them a long time to be able to cycle or change from a business ideology of push to a business ideology of pull. Selling is convincing somebody to take an action they weren’t already determined they were going to take. But conversion is giving somebody the tools or the system to take the action that they had already determined to take.
When you look at the “me” mindset, it’s about pushing people to take an action. It’s about the individual. But again with BNI, the great thing about networking is BNI members are helping each other find clients who need what they are selling. They are not pushing those they know to take action. Rather, when they meet someone who needs insurance, they rather say, I have someone who needs conversions assistance and will connect them to one of our network members who offers insurance. IT doesn’t push anybody to take action. Rather, it gives them a simple process to convert them to taking the action that they had already intended to take.
Mike, how will this model that you are talking about with givers gain help pull us out of this long term recession that the world is in?
Again, as I mentioned before, Harry Dun, Jr. did a lot of good research on this. Every 80 years, we move into a recession or depression as we move from a “me” mentality to a mentality of “we, the community.” Again, what happens is in a “me” cycle, we do things within our business that we normally wouldn’t take, especially father into a “me” cycle. We start to believe that we are bigger and better than we are and we push others to be bigger and better than who they are. It’s simply a flaw in thinking within that “me” cycle, especially at the extreme once we get past the height of that “me” cycle.
When we move into a “we” cycle, again, we move into a cycle of community and we demand authenticity and transparency in the marketplace. What is necessary to move out of the recession that we are in isn’t simply to identify that there was inflation created in the marketplace during a “me” cycle and to deflate that out of it, but rather to change the way that we think about business, marketing, hiring and firing employees.
Dan Ting did a really great job in his book, Drive, talking about that employees have moved beyond a carrot and stick mentality of motivation, which is very prevalent in a “me” cycle to a mentality of significance. This is true in society as a whole. Significance is more important than a carrot and stick approach to employment.
Again, to be able to pull us out of this recession, what business owners need to recognize is that what worked over the course of the last 40 years is no longer relevant or salient in today’s society. What their customers are looking for is not transaction but relationship. They want to build intimacy with you, the business owner, and you have to be able to understand how to develop that relationship. If you are looking at business in terms of transaction, the probability of that business succeeding over the course of the next 30 years is very, very remote because society as a whole, is looking for a business that they can build relationships with.
We are about out of time. I just want to say that I think this book really fits with the philosophy of BNI really, really well. For those of you listening, I endorsed Mike’s book and highly recommend it. This concept of relationship versus transaction is something that we definitely teach. One of our trademarks is “changing the way the world does business.” That integrates really well with what Mike talks about in the book, Pendulum.
If you have listened to many of my podcasts, you know I don’t do a whole lot of discussions on books. This is one of the few that I have had on my podcast because I think it is a really good fit for BNI members. I recommend that you go out and get it. You have a special. I am out of time here, Mike, but can you give the special that you have for BNI members only?
If you simply pay for shipping and handling of the book, we will give it to you for free, along with some other video content that we have created around the book. Again, $7.00 for shipping and handling and we will give you the book for free. The website to do that is penduluminaction.com/bni.
We will have that link also in the transcript, so if you didn’t get that it will be in the transcript. Mike is giving the book away for free. He is only charging shipping and handling. Go to that site and get it. Mike, thank you very much for making that offer to our members. I hope every member listening to this podcast takes you up on it. It’s a great offer. Thanks so much for being on the podcast today, Mike.
My pleasure. Thanks Ivan.
Back to you, Priscilla.
Alright. Great. I think that’s it for this week. I would just like to remind the listeners that this podcast has been brought to you by networkingnow.com, which is the leading site on the net for networking downloadables. Thank you for listening. This is Priscilla Rice, and we hope you will join us next week for another exciting episode of The Official BNI Podcast.