Welcome to #InspireAfricaProject! We are living in a world where superiors look down on their subordinates. Where the rich and powerful consider others as failures, government officials and politicians run people off the road, and where we judge people based on their class. But the truth is that there are treasures in every single human being on earth. Look for that treasure and celebrate it.

People will do more for you when you make them feel important. If you want to get the best from an individual, show the person that he is important. Corporate leaders who learned this act have loyal staff. In fact, their employees can go to the moon for them because they know that their boss would celebrate their accomplishments.

Nobody wants to work for a man who looks down on you and make you feel unimportant. That’s why in some organizations, the staff hardly leave even when they get better offers. But there are organizations where employees hardly stay for two years. They are always on the look out for another job in order to get away from their boss who behaves like a recluse.

David J. Schwartz shared this wonderful experience. “One of the elevator operators who carried me “up and down” for several months had the look of complete unimportance written all over.
She was fiftyish, unattractive, and certainly uninspired in her work. It was obvious that her longing to be important was completely unfulfilled. She was one of the millions of people who live for months at a time without ever being given a reason to believe that someone notices them or cares about them.

One morning shortly after I became one of her regular “uppers and downers,” I noticed that she had had her hair redone. It was nothing fancy. It was obviously a home-made job. But it had been cut and it did look better.

So I said, “Miss S. (Note: I had learned her name), I do like what you’ve done to your hair. It really looks fine.” She blushed, and said, “Thank you, sir,” and nearly missed her next stop. She appreciated the compliment.

Next morning, lo and behold, when I stepped into the elevator I heard, “Good morning, Dr. Schwartz.” Not one time before had I heard this operator address anyone by name. And in the remaining months that I had an office in the building I never heard anyone called by name except me.

I had made the operator feel important. I had sincerely complimented her and called her by name. I had made her feel important. Now she was repaying me back by making me feel important. Let’s not kid ourselves. People who do not have a deep-down feeling of self-importance are slated for mediocrity.”

He shared another life changing story on complimenting people. “Years ago, I rode a certain bus to work each morning. The driver was an old grump. Dozens, maybe hundreds of times, I saw the driver pull away from the curb when a wildly waving, shouting, and running passenger was just a second or two from the door.

Over a period of several months I saw this driver show special courtesy to only one passenger, and this passenger was shown special courtesy many times. The driver would wait for this passenger. Why? Because this passenger went out of his way to make the driver feel important.

Every morning he greeted the driver with personalized, sincere “Good morning, sir.” Sometimes this passenger would sit near the driver and make little comments like, “You sure have a lot of responsibility”; “It must take nerves of steel to drive through traffic like this every day”; “You sure keep this thing on schedule.”

That passenger made the driver feel as important as if he were piloting a 180-passenger jet liner. And the driver in return showed special courtesy to the passenger. It pays to make “little” people feel like big people.” How can we go about this? Practice these:

1. Practice Appreciation. Make it a rule to let others know you appreciate what they do for you. Never, never let anyone feel he is taken for granted. Practice appreciation with warm, sincere smile. A smile lets others know you notice them and feel kindly toward them. Let others know how you depend on them.

Anytime I’m conducting leadership training for corporate leaders, I usually tell them to make sure they appreciate or even praise any staff who accomplished something for the organization no matter how little it is. Appreciate the person during staff meeting in order to inspire others to do what he or she did. Appreciate the person by simply calling him into your office and tell him how you feel about the good things he did. Next time, that person will go to the moon for you.

2. Call People by their Names. Every year wise leaders get the best from their staff by simply calling them by their first names. It gives everyone a boost to be addressed by their names. It shows that person that you truly know him, not just as an employee, but as a friend.

Don’t forget to pronounce the name correctly, and spell it correctly. If you mispronounce or misspell someone’s name, that person will feel that you think he is unimportant. Also, when walking with people you don’t know well, add the appropriate title- Miss, Mister, Mrs, Chief, Dr, Engineer, etc. Doing that shows respect. You don’t just barge into people and say, “Hey, come here. Yes I’m talking to you!” It shows disrespect. Stop it now!

Dear friend, there are still many ways to get the best from people which time and space will not allow me to share today. But you can learn more at our conference (Inspire Africa Project Conference) on the 30th July, 2017, at Villa Park Hotel conference hall, Amuwo Odofin, Lagos. The full details about the conference is on the handbill below. I will be speaking on Marketing and Sales Strategies which is connected to this article, Becoming A 21st Century Business Leader, and many more. For further inquiry, kindly call Godwin on 07032681154. See you at the top!

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