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Give and Take

Looking for more great books? There are three main types of interaction, three different reciprocity styles: Takers, Givers, and Matchers:. Takers believe the world is a competitive, dog-eat-dog place. They believe in succeeding by being better than others. They feel like they must prove their competence so they self-promote and make sure they get plenty of credit for their efforts. What am I getting out of this?

Will this action be of value to me? Will this make me better off? Is this worth my time and energy? Takers are very calculating, cautious, and self-protective. They look out for themselves. Givers believe the world is a friendly place. They believe in succeeding by helping others and creating win-win situations. They are genuinely interested in helping others.

They often act without having a hidden agenda. Givers gladly give a helping hand without expecting anything in return. Most people are matchers.

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In this scenario, the giver will likely help you try to find the real Mr. Johnson and the real address.

The giver is compassionate and is truly interested in helping you. He might put in a considerable amount of effort to help you. A matcher will join you if he owes you a favor or if he thinks he can get equally as much back from you in the near future. A taker will only join you if he thinks he can get more back from you.

In short, takers try to get as much from other people as possible while contributing as little as they can.


  • Adam Grant’s Give and Take – a Short Summary;
  • Tea Tree: The Genus Melaleuca (Medicinal and Aromatic Plants - Industrial Profiles).
  • The Surprising Psychology of Givers, Takers, and Matchers.

Givers are generally people who enjoy helping others and are fine with giving more than they receive. The matchers aim for quid pro quo — I help you, you help me. Bottom line: There are three main reciprocity styles: Takers, Givers, and Matchers. Takers aim to get more than they give.

Givers and takers

Givers tend to give more than they get. And Matchers go for quid pro quo. You can always choose to act differently. As we mentioned earlier, our reciprocity style has just as much of an impact on our success as hard work, talent, and luck.

Givers, Takers, and Matchers: The Surprising Psychology of Success – Brain Pickings

People who are generous, who give more than they get, and who genuinely try to help others are more likely to have higher grades, be more productive, sell more, earn more money etc…. One big reason is because they build better reputations, more and stronger relationships, and far bigger networks than matchers or takers. Remember, when interacting with a giver, it quickly becomes clear that he genuinely cares about your interests.

He aims to make you and everyone else better off. He gives, helps, and puts in a lot of time and effort without expecting anything in return. He aims to create win-win relationships. This becomes his reputation. And as someone who cares about others and helps them succeed.

Needless to say, this kind of reputation opens the doors for new relationship and expanding your network. Takers build fewer relationships and smaller networks because they sacrifice their reputation by acting selfish and not caring about the interests of others. Thus, matchers — looking for quid pro quo — will feel inclined to give back to you. They are actively looking for ways to help you. Now matchers — looking for quid pro quo — will want to get even.

And it gets even worse for takers. That means even better news for givers: Matchers will grant you a bonus for helping their friends, family, or any other people. Givers succeed because most people are matchers — guys and gals valuing fairness and reciprocity. Bottom line: Givers succeed partly because most people are matchers who value reciprocity and fairness. The matchers grant a bonus to givers while punishing takers. You can build trust, goodwill, and a great reputation much more quickly than a few hundred years ago.

And, as far as takers are concerned, you can also destroy your reputation much more quickly today than before the Internet, telephones, and other technology. As teamwork becomes more and more common, givers gain a huge advantage over matchers and takers. Do you want your lawyer, doctor, dentist, teacher, plumber, and real estate agent to focus on contributing value to you, or claiming value from you? Bottom line: The service sector is growing.

Teamwork becomes the norm. And reputations get acquired much more quickly. These are all reasons why giving will become an even more important factor of success in the future. A giver genuinely cares about others and helps people without expecting anything in return. Takers and matchers, on the other hand, only help someone when their immediate benefit is at least as great as the benefit for the other person.

They insist on a quid pro quo in every interaction… and thus help fewer people than givers, which results in a much narrower network. Takers and Matchers suffer from a shortsightedness about networks. Bottom line: Givers enjoy helping others without wanting anything in return. Givers make themselves better off by making the whole group better off. They expand the pie: They make major contributions to the success of the groups… which means there is more success for the whole team to share.

The Surprising Psychology of Givers, Takers, and Matchers

They put in a lot of effort. They help others with their tasks. Selfless givers, as you may guess, are the ones who drop everything to help people all the time, which means they tend to fall behind on their own work. On the other hand, otherish givers are smart and strategic about their giving. At this point, you must be asking: what steps can I take to become a successful giver? After all, being a successful giver comes with many perks: stronger relationships, increased happiness , and better performance at work.

Here are a few tricks and tools successful givers have up their sleeves to help others while avoiding burnout. Do other people small favors that take no more than 5 minutes — like making an introduction, giving feedback, and offering advice. Made famous by serial entrepreneur Adam Rifkin, 5-minute favors are those small yet impactful favors you do for others that take no more than 5 minutes.

Doing these quick favors for a coworker or friend can go a long way in strengthening your relationships.

It gives them the opportunity to be a giver, but also makes them feel good and smart. According to Grant, one of the best ways to build strong relationships is to seek advice, because it creates meaningful opportunities for someone to contribute to your life, and feel fulfilled by it.

There are two ways to give: you can sprinkle random acts of kindness throughout your week, or chunk all of your giving acts into one day. Which is most effective? The chunking, research shows, because it leaves you with a bigger psychological boost of feeling appreciation and meaningfulness , which will motivate you to continue being a giver. Pick one or two ways of helping that you enjoy and excel at, rather than being jacks of all trades.

This way, you can help in a way that energizes you instead, of exhausts you.

...and the 2 issues you need to address to be a great partner.

To avoid this, take on the mentality of a matcher. But the key to being a successful giver is also being an authentic giver. Check out the next article in our Givers, Takers, Matchers series, where we explore how these reciprocity styles affect not only individuals, but also industries. You and a stranger will both receive some money. Which option would you choose? In , after the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, a US bank executive led a team of employees on a trip to help rebuild New Orleans.

Why do you think he did this? What would you be most likely to do? As you discuss how to divide tasks, it becomes clear that all three of you are extremely interested in two of the tasks, but view the third as quite boring. Schneerson is seventh in a prestigious line of chassidic rebbes.