Some event of last week reminded me of a very important aspect of life which is the Favor Bank. I became aware of the existence of the bank while reading the book of Paulo Coelho “Zahir”a long time ago. One of the fragments in a very accessible and not contrived way describes the principles of the non-financial but very valuable institutions. Please read below.

What’s so special about the Favor Bank? Many people, it seems that it is enough that we know someone important, that we have the right to demand from him a favor. In ordinary everyday business-life is the arrangement of work, use of the services, purchase of goods, loan, favouritism, promotion etc ..

Unfortunately, this is not as simple as it might seem. Did not work?! Why someone ignores us? Why not help?

Referring to my previous post on the topic of mentoring (How to Find a Mentor?) of course it can happen, and sometimes it happens, that we meet someone on our way who can help us, gives us a favor completely selflessly, often this person is also our mentor or promoter. More often, however, selflessness is difficult to encounter. And then comes into play Favor Bank.

It is much easier to take advantage of the benefits of its actions when in the first we will take care of the deposit in the bank before the moment will come when we will be forced to use the help. It is worth remembering about it when you are starting the career and you begin to invest in favor of the Favor Bank. It is completely selfless action. Each person encountered on your way whose you will help in a selfless manner naturally becomes your debtor. Sometime in the future, perhaps there will come a time that you will need support in person, then you should turn to for help to your “debtors”. There is no certainty that it will work, but the odds are huge!

So how does Favor Bank:

favor bank coelho

Paulo Coelho: „Zahir”, chapter one “I am a free man” (fragment)

– What is this Favor Bank?
 
– You know. Everyone knows.
 
– Possibly, but I still haven’t quite grasped what you’re saying.
 
– It was an American writer who first mentioned it. It’s the most powerful bank in the world, and you’ll find it in every sphere of life.
 
– Yes, but I come from a country without a literary tradition. What favors could I do for
anyone?
 
– That doesn’t matter in the least. Let me give you an example: I know that you’re an up-
and-coming writer and that, one day, you’ll be very influential. I know this because, like
you, I too was once ambitious, independent, honest. I no longer have the energy I once
had, but I want to help you because I can’t or don’t want to grind to a halt just yet. I’m
not dreaming about retirement, I’m still dreaming about the fascinating struggle that is
life, power, and glory.
I start making deposits in your account—not cash deposits, you understand, but
contacts. I introduce you to such-and-such a person, I arrange certain deals, as long as
they’re legal. You know that you owe me something, but I never ask you for anything.
 
– And then one day…
 
– Exactly. One day, I’ll ask you for a favor and you could, of course, say no, but you’re
conscious of being in my debt. You do what I ask, I continue to help you, and other
people see that you’re a decent, loyal sort of person and so they too make deposits in
your account—always in the form of contacts, because this world is made up of contacts
and nothing else. They too will one day ask you for a favor, and you will respect and help
the people who have helped you, and, in time, you’ll have spread your net worldwide,
you’ll know everyone you need to know and your influence will keep on growing.”
 
– I could refuse to do what you ask me to do.
 
– You could. The Favor Bank is a risky investment, just like any other bank. You refuse
to grant the favor I asked you, in the belief that I helped you because you deserved to be
helped, because you’re the best and everyone should automatically recognise your talent.
 
– Fine, I say thank you very much and ask someone else into whose account I’ve also made
various deposits; but from then on, everyone knows, without me having to say a word,
that you are not to be trusted.
 
– You’ll grow only half as much as you could have grown, and certainly not as much as
you would have liked to. At a certain point, your life will begin to decline, you got
halfway, but not all the way, you are half-happy and half-sad, neither frustrated nor
fulfilled. You’re neither cold nor hot, you’re lukewarm, and as an evangelist in some
holy book says: ‘Lukewarm things are not pleasing to the palate.’

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