by Woody Woodcock
So you’re back from spring break? Anybody have any interesting stories to tell, new tattoos, scars, maybe a new girlfriend/boyfriend… maybe an ex-girlfriend/boyfriend? Ha ha! I’m sure you do and hey I’m not judging. Did you meet anyone interesting on your trip? How did you do that? Oh, by small talk on the beach, at a bar somewhere, cruise ship, airplane? What did you talk about? March Madness, Tiger Woods, Healthcare, how much you guys party at your school, who you know from their old high school? Yeah, I gotcha.
Anybody screw an outrageous amount of people into a conversation and maybe get some digits ? [readers that haven't seen Phired Up programs may not understand the term, "screw" here. It's not what you think.] Maybe now you have some people to follow up with. How many Facebook friends did you add over spring break? Ask yourself, “Why was it so much easier to meetpeople on spring break?” It was easier wasn’t it…..you didn’t waste all your time hanging with just your crew did you….? I hope not.
What did you talk about on Spring Break? It was so simple because you kept it fun and easy nothing too serious. You didn’t dive into selling your fraternity/sorority by the third sentence of every conversation like some desperate member during recruitment week, right? Sometimes that is all it takes tostart a relationship with someone. What if you met that many new people each week on your campus? How different would your social network be if it were always that easy to meet people? How cool would it be if you added that many Facebook friends each week and maybe these people turn into prospective new members… or as I heard recently “Bro-spective” new members? How can you bring that Spring Break Socially Excellent Attitude back to school with you?
I just came awayfrom an amazing experience in Los Cabos Mexico thanks to Tom Pennington and the American Leadership Academy which is attended by men of Phi Kappa Psi. During my time at the American Leadership Academy successful people like Jerry Nelson (Founder of ALA) and Paul Wineman (National President for Phi Psi) along with other top speakers kept talking about a winning mindset. Winners and losers have a certain mindset. Top negotiators have a certain mindset, top leaders, top recruiters and gold medalists from the Olympics like Coach John Speraw USA 2008 Beijing (Phi Psi, UCLA, now head men’s Volleyball coach at UC Irvine).
You actually WON with people on spring break because of your mindset not to be afraid to have a conversation with a stranger. You probably were offering to help them with a seat, offering to share some sunscreen, offering a Gatorade or bottled water, or maybe a cerveza… you had a generous mindset, and that is how you need to be all the time to WIN with relationships.
Don’t worry if you don’t get anything in return from these people immediately. Chances are if you consistently treat people right, they will want to spend more time with you. Change your mindset, be generous be normal and do normal things to make friends on your campus. Can you try to have that winning spring break mentality year round? You were just there and I know you have the sunburn or hangover to remind you what it was like.