Word-Of-the-Week #640: Advice

November 10, 2016 by  

Advicean opinion about what could or should be done.

Do you think your parents gave you good advice as a child? Do you often give your opinion about what could or should be done? Are you good at accepting advice?

The July 6, 2009, Fortune Magazine cover reads, “The Best Advice I Ever Got” by Bill Gates. In the article he states, “My dad and my mom were great at encouraging me as a kid to do things that I wasn’t good at, to go out for a lot of different sports like swimming, football, soccer, and I didn’t know why. At the time I thought it was kind of pointless, but it ended up really exposing me to leadership opportunities and showing me that I wasn’t good at a lot of things, instead of sticking to things that I was comfortable with. It was fantastic, and now some of those activities I cherish. They had to stick to it because I pushed back a lot, but it was fantastic advice.”

Bill Gates Sr. says, “One of the best pieces of advice I ever had was to get along with and encourage the right things with your youngsters. Bill’s mother and I were involved in parent effectiveness training. And what the people taught and emphasized, which is central and so significant, is that you should never demean your child. I’m a great fan of my son’s. I think he’s an incredible citizen and a wonderful business man, and we let that show in the things we do together.”

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And Bill says, “One of the reasons we have a great working relationship and are a close family is because we have well-defined roles. I’m kind of a driving, “Why haven’t we gotten all these things done?” [kind of person], and dad is the voice of wisdom. We’ll be having a meeting, talking about the calendar or the cost or those things, and he’ll make a comment that will get everybody to stop and think. You know, we missed that way of looking at things. And his being there at the foundation full-time really has shaped the values. When we have the foundation meeting, people get up and applaud because they see that that really makes a difference. And to create a family foundation, when I was busy, and yet to know that the values were going to be right and strong, I give credit for that to my dad.”

I have heard that the only person who wants to hear advice is the one giving it. I tend to be more receptive when people ask if I want their advice. How about you?

This week focus on giving and receiving advice. Can you give advice in a positive manner? How does it make you feel when someone offers their opinion on what you could or should do?

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