Navigating the business world can feel like roaming about the Fire Swamp, dodging Rats Of Unusual Size at every turn. But it doesn’t have to! Here are some tips from The Princess Bride on doing business, no matter your station. You may find it inconceivable but, trust me, these words of wisdom can create an ideal situation for you and your business.
- Help each other out, even the competition.
“You seem a decent fellow. I hate to kill you.” When Inigo and Westley are first preparing to duel, Westley is barely hanging on for dear life off the Cliffs of Insanity. Even though he knew that he would try to battle to the death, Inigo throws a rope to his nemesis in order to help him up the cliffside. You don’t have to help your competition win over sales, but be willing to help each other get on even playing field. Industries should be filled with folks who are willing to get on the same page and help each other out when times get rough.
- Explain your process thoroughly.
Your customers definitely shouldn’t remind you of Prince Humperdink, but you should be willing to give them your process. After a thorough description, Westley explains to his foe, “That is what to the pain means. It means I leave you in anguish, wallowing in freakish misery forever.” Give a step by step process of what your customers can expect, so that there are no surprises.
- Be kind.
Fezzik, despite his brute strength, is a gentle soul. When fighting the Man in Black, Fezzik tells him that he wants the Man in Black to feel like he’s doing well in the fight. “I hate for people to die embarrassed.” Be thoughtful and considerate of others, whether they are your employees, potential buyers, upper management, or competition. Kindness will take you far in life.
- Finally, a guide to networking from Inigo: