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The secret to developing a healthy obsession with the customer

30-second summary:
To better understand the customer, brands will need to reevaluate how they interact with and track the customer journey
Understanding the high-value customers and their behavior will allow brands to enhance the customer experience and build long-lasting relationships
Data and digital transformation are necessary steps to transform the customer experience
Brands will need to focus on developing strong first-party data to ensure they can create a 360-degree view of the customer.

The traditional marketing mix – defined by the four Ps of product, price, place, and promotion – has given way to the “total customer experience” as the standard by which great brands are built.
It is created by orchestrating a series of individual, seamlessly integrated interactions that reflect and enhance the value of your brand at every touchpoint. All throughout the customer journey, the experiences you provide are either helping you build a lasting relationship with your customer, or helping you destroy one.
High-value consumer relationships are unique and complicated, but they can be understood and cultivated.

Ultimately, they are built upon moments in time – individual touchpoints blend together into a set of meaningful experiences that ultimately merge to form relationships. This is a simple but powerful truth, and the thoughtful use of data, analytics, and technology can deliver an actionable, tangible set of moments that can turn experiences into relationships.
The best brands in the world are tied together by a common obsession with the consumer. One of Amazon’s guiding principles is a “customer obsession, rather than competitor focus.” At Salesforce, a core value states “We’re obsessed with our customers’ success and take pride in their achievements.”

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This kind of obsession can only be served by a level of hyper-personalization that follows a blueprint for developing, managing, and delivering on a customer-centric approach.
In today’s market, it is a critical driver of business success. According to Temkin Group research, customer loyalty increases in direct correlation to the level of experience provided by a brand.
There is immense opportunity for brands to control their own destiny. And to take advantage of it, they need to directly influence the customer experience across marketing, sales, commerce, and service.
Now more than ever, brands are determined to bring together a cohesive, 360-degree view of the customer.
But market forces, such as privacy regulations, the death of third-party cookies, the shake out of martech space, the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), and the emergence of cloud platforms like Google, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and others, are causing a shift in the way marketers approach customer centricity.
These forces are driving a movement away from reliance on third-party data and toward the predominance of first-party data and identity. Therein lies the greatest opportunity.
Going forward, organizations will need to fully maximize their first-party data assets through more productive interactions with their customers and prospects and leverage strategic partnerships to deliver second-party data. This will require a design for data maximization and a strong infrastructure founded on an enterprise-level identity management capability.
There will be big winners and big losers in this effort, and the companies that can master the total customer experience will have a true competitive edge, manifested in revenues, profit margins, growth rates, employee and customer satisfaction, and ultimately shareholder value.
To drive that competitive advantage, the CMO – and the entire C-suite – must employ a specific set of skills that revolve around data transformation, digital transformation, and their own organizational agility.
The formula for customer experience transformation
As brands build strategies to re-emerge from the COVID-driven recession and cater to a changed consumer, the way forward is through a customer experience transformation. Market leadership is built by implementing a strategy and infrastructure to support it.
The equation for success is:

data transformation + digital transformation = customer experience transformation.

The components of this equation are defined as follows:
Data transformation is the privacy-safe acquisition, management, analysis, and activation of valuable data that informs customer interactions in real time. Companies need platforms that enable the organization to work efficiently, effectively, and unbounded with vast amounts of first-party data.
Digital transformation is the design and delivery of customer experiences that are contextually relevant and personally informed. A core set of technology assets enables greater knowledge at each point of interaction, provides insight on why the customer is engaging, and informs decisions around how to best serve the relationship at a specific point in time.
The resulting customer experience transformation involves innovation that drives differentiation and measurable business results. It requires a careful orchestration of disparate functions within a business, balancing multiple strategies simultaneously and adapting to pursue common goals with a constant customer lens.
This formula can only be achieved with an organizational adaptiveness that transcends traditional media silos and divergent product-based or channel-based objectives, functioning as a connected ecosystem that is fixated on the customer.
From the boardroom to the front lines, the entire organization must be conditioned to put customer needs at the center of every decision, every action and every moment.  It’s about marketing, sales, commerce, and service working in unison to deliver a unified experience.
To seize this opportunity, you must change the way you engage with customers and understand their needs. It requires the ability to effectively connect data, implement automation, and coordinate internal processes.
Addressing these challenges requires enterprise-wide buy-in that starts at the C-suite and spans the entire organization.
Craig has been a member of the Merkle executive leadership team for nearly 15 years. In his role as Global CEO, he is responsible for the company’s many service lines, including customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise technology, data, analytics, performance media, user experience, performance creative, promotion and loyalty solutions, and customer strategy consulting. He oversees a staff of more than 9,700 employees in over 50 locations throughout the Americas, EMEA, and APAC.

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Here’s How Much Teachers Are Paid in Every State

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The coronavirus pandemic rages on, but one way or another, teachers returned to work last fall and have continued doing their jobs throughout this school year.Elementary school teachers in the U.S. earned an average annual wage of $63,930 as of 2019, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Middle school teachers earned an average of $63,550 at that same time. High school teachers averaged $65,930 per year.
But teacher pay varies considerably by state. States also vary as to which level pays best. Often, elementary school teachers make less than their middle school and high school counterparts, but not always.
Following are the average annual wages for elementary, middle and high school teachers in each state. The states are ranked based on elementary-school pay.

50. Mississippi
Peek Creative Collective / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $44,060
Employment: 12,340
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $48,170
Employment: 6,180
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $46,580
Employment: 8,850
49. South Dakota
Deliris / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $44,110
Employment: 4,070
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $44,990
Employment: 1,920
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $44,610
Employment: 3,500
48. West Virginia
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $45,390
Employment: 5,330
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $47,570
Employment: 5,160
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $47,610
Employment: 4,460
47. Arizona
Asia Images Group / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $45,600
Employment: 23,290
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $45,120
Employment: 12,330
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $50,320
Employment: 16,990
46. Oklahoma
sevenMaps / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $45,970
Employment: 17,980
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $46,360
Employment: 8,320
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $47,320
Employment: 11,680
45. Louisiana
stockfour / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $48,630
Employment: 23,670
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $49,790
Employment: 7,600
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $52,090
Employment: 14,810
44. Arkansas
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $48,800
Employment: 13,010
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $50,720
Employment: 6,450
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $51,870
Employment: 11,940
43. Idaho
Agenturfotografin / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $48,880
Employment: 8,380
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $53,970
Employment: 1,820
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $50,640
Employment: 6,210

42. Alabama
Timothy Kuiper / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $50,270
Employment: 23,650
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $51,600
Employment: 10,310
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $51,950
Employment: 15,230
41. Kansas
wavebreakmedia / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $50,650
Employment: 16,340
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $53,500
Employment: 6,630
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $52,050
Employment: 12,310

40. Missouri
wavebreakmedia / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $50,920
Employment: 22,850
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $51,930
Employment: 11,080
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $50,980
Employment: 30,640
39. Montana
DGLImages / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $52,160
Employment: 4,920
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $58,710
Employment: 2,070
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $52,360
Employment: 3,670

38. Indiana
wavebreakmedia / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $52,570
Employment: 25,530
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $52,450
Employment: 11,320
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $53,150
Employment: 21,180
37. Kentucky
wavebreakmedia / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $52,660
Employment: 19,270
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $53,830
Employment: 8,160
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $55,100
Employment: 12,280
36. Maine
Aleksandra Suzi / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $52,860
Employment: 5,780
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $56,740
Employment: 3,230
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $55,260
Employment: 5,400
35. South Carolina
DGLImages / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $53,450
Employment: 22,550
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $55,180
Employment: 9,790
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $56,730
Employment: 14,050
34. Tennessee
Undrey / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $53,540
Employment: 30,620
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $53,880
Employment: 13,240
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $55,060
Employment: 20,690
33. Iowa
iofoto / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $53,950
Employment: 18,720
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $55,250
Employment: 7,920
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $56,570
Employment: 11,950
32. Colorado
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $54,670
Employment: 25,740
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $54,940
Employment: 12,980
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $56,370
Employment: 17,580

31. Florida
KK Tan / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $55,210
Employment: 77,170
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $56,640
Employment: 33,600
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $57,880
Employment: 50,640
29. North Carolina (tie)
wavebreakmedia / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $48,560
Employment: 42,520
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $49,620
Employment: 18,770
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $49,930
Employment: 24,030
29. North Dakota (tie)
vladaphotowiz / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $55,630
Employment: 4,450
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $59,700
Employment: 1,380
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $56,250
Employment: 2,800
28. Texas
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $56,280
Employment: 131,880
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $56,290
Employment: 64,340
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $58,000
Employment: 107,190
27. Nevada
POP-THAILAND / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $56,980
Employment: 10,480
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $59,150
Employment: 4,000
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $58,090
Employment: 5,760
26. New Mexico
ESB Professional / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $57,330
Employment: 7,650
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $49,570
Employment: 3,250
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $57,410
Employment: 6,880
25. Wisconsin
GagliardiImages / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $57,980
Employment: 28,240
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $58,940
Employment: 13,800
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $59,180
Employment: 17,880
24. Georgia
Oksana Kuzmina / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $58,190
Employment: 50,250
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $58,830
Employment: 28,440
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $59,860
Employment: 26,500

23. Wyoming
ESB Professional / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $58,940
Employment: 2,550
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $61,340
Employment: 1,090
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $61,400
Employment: 1,690
22. New Hampshire
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $59,930
Employment: 6,070
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $60,290
Employment: 3,100
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $60,720
Employment: 5,000
21. Nebraska
Pressmaster / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $60,390
Employment: 9,810
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $62,130
Employment: 4,310
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $60,500
Employment: 6,890
20. Utah
saravutpics / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $60,660
Employment: 13,110
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,720
Employment: 6,540
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $61,050
Employment: 8,920
19. Minnesota
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,250
Employment: 22,420
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $64,790
Employment: 9,730
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $64,960
Employment: 20,130
18. Illinois
ESB Professional / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,280
Employment: 64,270
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,630
Employment: 21,700
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $74,340
Employment: 44,810
17. Hawaii
Poznyakov / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,360
Employment: 5,780
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,520
Employment: 2,090
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $62,580
Employment: 4,320
16. Vermont
Halfpoint / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,480
Employment: 3,770
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $61,470
Employment: 1,030
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $66,660
Employment: 2,770
15. Delaware
ESB Professional / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,970
Employment: 3,800
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $64,800
Employment: 2,200
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $66,920
Employment: 3,330

14. Ohio
Joseph Sohm / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $64,090
Employment: 57,220
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,510
Employment: 30,880
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $64,410
Employment: 47,510
13. Michigan
l i g h t p o e t / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $69,050
Employment: 37,130
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $64,920
Employment: 13,910
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $63,000
Employment: 22,820
12. Washington
Syda Productions / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $69,390
Employment: 30,440
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $70,970
Employment: 9,430
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $71,690
Employment: 14,810
11. Pennsylvania
Hurst Photo / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $69,630
Employment: 57,100
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $69,330
Employment: 26,460
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $66,920
Employment: 46,130

10. Virginia
1641857584 / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $69,690
Employment: 38,700
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $71,920
Employment: 18,300
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $69,070
Employment: 25,620
9. Oregon
Hurst Photo / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $69,980
Employment: 15,950
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $70,660
Employment: 6,250
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $71,780
Employment: 8,840
8. New Jersey
ESB Professional / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $71,880
Employment: 40,640
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $73,380
Employment: 26,590
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $78,090
Employment: 30,230
7. Rhode Island
wavebreakmedia / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $72,310
Employment: 4,100
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $75,130
Employment: 1,670
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $75,950
Employment: 4,840
6. Maryland
Rawpixel.com / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $75,380
Employment: 28,610
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $74,400
Employment: 14,890
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $77,050
Employment: 17,150
5. Alaska
Romrodphoto / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $75,860
Employment: 3,820
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $80,730
Employment: 1,160
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $75,820
Employment: 2,790
4. Connecticut
Hananeko_Studio / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $78,070
Employment: 15,930
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $79,510
Employment: 8,320
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $78,540
Employment: 15,820
3. Massachusetts
racorn / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $82,450
Employment: 31,430
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $80,520
Employment: 15,910
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $81,070
Employment: 27,120
2. California
Rawpixel.com / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $82,560
Employment: 164,910
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $80,160
Employment: 39,780
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $85,080
Employment: 109,840
1. New York
iofoto / Shutterstock.com
Elementary school teachers:
Average annual wage: $82,830
Employment: 92,560
Middle school teachers:
Average annual wage: $87,050
Employment: 42,010
High school teachers:
Average annual wage: $87,240
Employment: 75,360

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Are You Self-Obsessed Or Customer-Obsessed?

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You can tell within seconds if a person or business is obsessed with itself or obsessed with its customers. To the trained eye, the signs are obvious and only one type will succeed in the long run. How can you tell, and which are you?

Are you self-obsessed or customer-obsessed?
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Self-obsessed
At the extreme, the self-obsessed business owner makes everything about them. They’re the star of the show and their success is a reflection of their value to society. They start by looking at themselves, their company and their bottom line. They decide which products they can make and which services are the most profitable.
Websites describe “we” and “us” without mentioning “you”. Products are mismatched to audiences; advertising doesn’t resonate and it’s a brand only a mother could love.
Any announcement reads like an Oscar-winner’s speech, any update comes with an opinion. It’s not about how their customers want something; it’s about how the business wants to deliver it. It’s not about what’s in it for you, it’s about what I put into it. It’s selling the what without mentioning the why. It’s letting the ego lead and leaving the empathy trailing.

It’s one way to run a business.
But customers don’t want to know about your glowing accolades, they want to know how you will meet their needs. They don’t want to hear about your research trip, they want to be welcomed in and made to feel special. They don’t want to buy one-size fits all, so stop trying to sell it.
Even the most well-regarded names aren’t talking about themselves non-stop. They’re humble rather than braggers. They serve to serve, not to show-off.
If you see John Smith through John Smith’s eyes, you’ll sell John Smith what John Smith buys. The best businesses are obsessed with their customers.

Are you self-obsessed or customer-obsessed?
getty
Customer-obsessed
Customer-obsessed brands quiz their customers non-stop. How can I help? What are you struggling with? What do you think? What do you need? How can we understand every expectation so we can exceed it beyond belief?
They look at data. They listen to feedback. They look for patterns and they predict the future. They keep asking questions until the problem is understood and the answer is clear. It informs new products. It sparks new ideas. They know what their customers want and they speak on their level.
Their customer is valued, not seen as a nuisance. They have them in mind throughout every decision and they act in their best interests. They know them better than they know themselves because they have studied them like a scientist meticulously poring over a lab report.
Meetings and phone calls are looked forward to and promises are kept. If a customer leaves, there’s a full post-mortem. They focus on client retention over acquisition because they know one will take care of the other. It’s a vision shared by every member of the team, not confined to customer services. A group responsibility. Nothing is too much trouble. It’s always a yes. Above and beyond is second nature. They are there to serve and it’s repaid in volumes.
“That’ll do” is not in the vocabulary of a customer-focused business. The focus is quality over quantity and testing is relentless before a launch. They’ll under-promise and overdeliver instead of squeezing someone in to fit a target.
If it doesn’t make you proud, don’t serve it to the crowd.
Are you self-obsessed or customer-obsessed? Is your to-do list full of things for you or things for them? Are you constantly thinking of their needs and how you can meet them, or is everything about you? There’s only one way to run a great business.

7 Steps to Successfully Interacting With Others

The quality of life we have is determined by our relationships.
Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox
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This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
Human beings are social beings, we are beings that we need from others. Therefore, it is very important to learn to relate, because if we can develop this skill, we will definitely be able to exponentiate our results. If you start to analyze, the most important achievements of our life have been obtained with the help of others. In such a way, that the quality of life we have is determined based on our relationships. That is why we present the 7 steps that will help you relate:
Step 1: Be curious
Life is full of opportunities to meet people. When do you have these opportunities? When you are in a waiting room, on a bus, when you are catching a plane, queuing at the bank, etc. Take an interest in the people who are close to you. Arouse that curiosity and start asking questions. Ask them about things that might be important to them, like what you do, who your family members are, or what your interests are. Break the ice and venture into conversations!
Step 2: listen to people
One of the greatest gifts you can give another human being is listening to them, giving them your attention and your time. How can you do it and show that you are actively listening? Put your cell phone aside, pay attention to the other person, maintain eye contact, ask questions that are intelligent, start to find common ground and develop a conversation. Finally, do not ask closed but open questions, so that the other person is also curious to have a conversation with you.
Step 3: be open
They have taught us that it is best not to say much about ourselves, for fear that if we are open, people may have certain information about us that makes us vulnerable and that can be used against us. My invitation to you is to break these wrong patterns and take risks. Learn to trust yourself and lose the fear of being open. Share smart and fun ideas. Your way of thinking will open the doors for you in the relationship with the other. You never know if what you say will make someone ponder something deep, laugh or look at you from a new perspective.
Step 4: Look for common themes
As different as human beings are, if you search and do some research you can find common themes. What could they be? If the person has a partner, who are their children, if they like to travel, read, do sports, what are their hobbies, etc. Develop the ability to ask questions and share stories, in such a way that you find topics that can relate to others and communicate different experiences that allow you to feel close.
Step 5: Avoid prejudice
Human beings, by social learning, tend to put labels or put people in a drawer because of how they look, their height, skin color, type of hairstyle, clothing, socioeconomic status, among others. We continually create a story around people, although in reality, we never know who is behind that image that is presented to us. Meeting many people will give you the opportunity to meet wonderful individuals and if they are similar or very different from you, with practice that will not prevent you from being able to relate and will definitely bring you closer to success.
Step 6: be authentic
It is essential to be authentic in relationships, to be yourself. It is something that people capture even if we want to hide it, because they realize when we put on a mask so that they do not see who we really are or perceive when we are pretending. Being authentic, sincere and transparent is a tool that will help you connect with others. My proposal for you is that you speak from the heart, share your opinions, learn to be yourself, because it is something that people will feel and value.
Step 7: Discover the value of people
Every human being has a value. If you manage to develop the ability to decipher what it is, it will definitely help you to relate. See what sets them apart, what makes them special, what they are proud of, etc. Find the value of each person and that will open the doors to a relationship.

Why Control Is Nothing More Than an Optical Illusion

This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
Even as more and more people want to exploit their potential, explore their senses and live their creativity to the fullest, many of us grew up in a society that insists on dictating the way things “should” be. They compulsively tell us how we should dress, how we should think, the steps they think we should walk to be happy, who we should like, and they even define whether or not what we do will lead us to success.
Fortunately, these rules no longer apply to everyone. Every day there are more people who dare to break the schemes by deciding to undertake projects in which they believe and for which they feel great passion. And it was while reflecting on this topic that I asked myself the following question: “What was it that led [us] to make such an important decision in life?” And I came to the same conclusion over and over again, they let go [we let go] of control of everything that they made us believe we could control.
Trust that there are people as good as you, and even better.
Within the world of work, and entrepreneurship, you must remember that humility is a quality that not everyone possesses, but that without a doubt it is a great differentiator. This not only puts you in perspective in any situation, but also allows you to value everything you can learn from other people regardless of whether they have less or more experience than you.
And this is where learning to let go of control comes in, how? Trusting that there are many people out there who you can believe in and with whom you can grow, share and strengthen your own knowledge.
Accept that you can’t do everything
How many times has it happened to you that you say to yourself or someone else: “Yes, I can handle this too.” Or the typical one: “You tell me what I have to do and I’ll do it.” Even when you know perfectly well that you are already saturated with pending, meetings or deliveries. And, as you say yes, you visualize the invisible rope slightly, and slowly, squeezing your neck.
Why are we doing this? Because although we can do many things, sometimes even more than we think, it is necessary to accept that sometimes it is not possible to become octopuses. And you know what? Nothing happens!
Many times I have found myself in this situation, where like you, I feel that the hours of the day do not reach me. Faced with this type of situation, one ends up frustrated and tired of seeing that no matter how much one advances, one continues to go at a snail’s pace. And this is where I once again reaffirm how important it is to dare to let go of the control of wanting to do everything, and that it also turns out well.
Actually, this is precisely where you need to be responsible and cautious enough to correctly calculate your times so that you do not have to work late and better choose to rest and get up earlier to continue. Breathe, a good organization is essential to not feel that everything is for “now.” In the end, you will realize that you can, but that to achieve this it is necessary to make several adjustments.
Also, remember if you do not let go of control of everything that happens in your business, you will fall into the so hated “micromanagement” and that, it is a problem from which it is difficult to get out. You can read my article The Dark Side of Micromanaging here.
Learn to delegate responsibilities
Rather than thinking that delegating is taking away your credit or stealing the spotlight, see this opportunity as the right time for others to gain responsibility.
There are many people who want to do everything by themselves to be able to say that they were the ones who did “such” or “such”. But, sometimes, it says much more about a person to allow a team to do the work, so delegating responsibilities is also part of letting go of control, trusting that there are other people who can complement your knowledge and enrich your experiences.
And finally, I ask you the following question: what do you think is the engine that drives our desire to control everything? Ponder it for a few seconds.
Effectively, control is an illusion based on fear. Fear that someone else won’t do it “as well as you.” Fear that things will “go wrong” because of someone else. And even fear of discovering that someone else is better than you. And here comes my last question.
And won’t it be worth discovering people who are better than you to enrich your business and your own knowledge? At the end of the day, your business depends on contacts, teams and how well you know how to let go, delegate and take advantage of all the opportunities that come your way.