A few months ago I was in San Diego for a speaking engagement. I had an hour-long drive from airport to hotel with Allen. Allen is a 75 year old retired investment banker from New York, who’s only goal now is to “choose when I drive and where I go for lunch.”
I chatted with Allen for the drive, and he told me the story of how he started his career at 24, by listening, learning, building relationships with experienced bankers, modeling what they did, learning the ropes from the greats of his industry. He went on to say (and I quote him with his permission), “you know, here’s the thing. 50 years later and these are still my people. These are still my friends, my confidants, and my go to guys. You can’t teach relationship building by reading spreadsheets. You have to feel it, and you have to care about it more than your own success. A good business deal, is one where everyone comes out a winner.”
I think Allen should give up driving, and consider a career in motivational speaking.
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