Trusting a bald barberWritten by Tom Richard | | firstname.lastname@example.org
It seemed like any other day when I walked into the barbershop. The old-fashioned, wood-paneled room looked like a scene only Norman Rockwell could create.
I was greeted with the customary, “Hey, guy” from the balding, overweight barber. Thrilled that I wouldn’t have to wait for my haircut, I took a seat in the oversized barber chair. He spun me around so I was facing away from the mirror, but I didn’t mind. My eyes were already fixed on the television perched high in the corner of the shop.
“So, what’ll it be, guy?” the bald barber asked. His hand lingered over the clippers, like a gunslinger over his holstered pistol.
“The usual,” I said confidently. “No. 1 tapered up on the sides, trimmed up and thinned up on top.”
Large clumps of hair began falling on my shoulders. I struggled to hear the television over the humming in my ears. After about ten minutes, the bald barber spun me around so that I was facing the mirror. Proudly, the barber asked, “So how does it look?”
My eyes grew wide with horror; my lips had no words to answer his question. There was an awkward silence as I screamed inside my head, “What have you done?” I considered telling him how awful it was, but what would that do? It’s not like he could have glued it back on. There was absolutely nothing I could do. Remembering the barber’s question, I forced out the words, “Not bad.”
I had blindly trusted the bald barber. I let him have complete control of my hair without even watching. He didn’t know exactly what I wanted, and I was too engulfed in the television to really tell him. I should have participated, asking to watch him work or giving my input along the way. If I was going to trust someone else with my haircut, it should have at least been someone with great hair.
Unfortunately, a bad haircut isn’t the only consequence of taking advice from the wrong person. In business, bad advice may not be as obvious, but it is exponentially more devastating. For that reason, you should be very careful about choosing the people who will influence you.
Many business people with tremendous potential will never achieve success, simply because they give into the influences of the wrong people. They choose to commiserate with others at the water cooler and spend their meetings talking about why something cannot happen instead of how it can. Instead of shaping their future with their own hands, they simply accept what others give them.
If you want to be a positive, successful person, seek out people with those same qualities. Surrounding yourself with their energy will help you achieve what they have. As the Spanish proverb says, “Tell me with whom you walk and I will tell you who you are.”
Now, if you want to be a positive, successful business person, you must go one step further. Make sure that the people you take advice from are capable of giving you the professional advice you need. Sometimes we choose to take business advice from our friends. While they may be dependable and well intentioned, it doesn’t mean they know what’s best for you professionally. Keep your friends as friends, not as business consultants.
If you want success, take your future into your own hands. Actively seek positive influences that will help you achieve your fullest potential. Don’t just sit in the giant barber chair, letting a stranger spin you and have free reign at reshaping your head. Choose your barber and your company carefully, and face that mirror! You’re the one who has to live with it.
Tom Richard is a sales trainer in the Toledo area. He may be contacted at email@example.com.