Friendships are a give and take of emotional support, camaraderie, and more. When you're in a pinch, asking a friend to help out should be as easy as a normal flowing conversation. Likewise, if she were in need, you would almost feel insulted if she didn't turn to you for assistance. This is a beautiful benefit to .
What if the key to success was altruism? In his book Give and Take, Adam Grant, a management professor at Wharton, challenges conventional wisdom and paints an optimistic portrait of leaders that is far from the stereotype of a businessman who is ready to destroy everything in his path to succeed. The author distinguishes between givers, who are largely willing to help others without expecting anything in return, and takers, who put their own interests before those of others. If the latter show more ambition and motivation, it’s givers who, against all odds, dominate at the top of the social ladder. For example, the majority of high-earning salespeople are more generous than the average person. The reason why, according to Grant, is that generous behavior (relaying a message, helping someone write an email, giving career advice, sharing a link on Facebook) not only makes it possible to find personal success (peer recognition, motivation), but also goes hand-in-hand with employee productivity, customer satisfaction, and low turnover. Leaders thus have everything to gain from encouraging generosity among their employees, provided they do no fall into the opposite extreme: spending too much time and energy helping others. The other side of his argument is that generosity should not lead to forgetting your own objectives. It is all a matter of balance. Five minutes a day of generosity is enough to enjoy its benefits, says the author. A theory that should be tested as soon as possible!
In friendship, give and take is sometimes a difficult concept to maintain. The balance of who is doing "more" for the friendship will go back and forth, and over time it should be a fairly equal thing. But in the short-term it is impossible to determine who is giving more. Only in hindsight are you able to really look back and access.