Giving vs. Getting

Healthcare Leadership

with Dan Nielsen


Harvard Business Review on Giving vs. Getting


The June 2016 issue of Harvard Business Review includes a well-written, fascinating article on the topic of mergers and acquisitions titled “M&A: The One Thing You Need to Get Right.” The article discusses the HUGE difference in organizational success based on the acquiring organization’s focus on “what they are going to give” vs. “what they are going to get.”


For example, the author, Roger L. Martin, makes the case that “typically 70%-90% of acquisitions are abysmal failures.” He continues,


“Why is that so? The answer is surprisingly simple. Companies that focus on what they are going to get from an acquisition are less likely to succeed than those that focus on what they have to give it.”


The same is true for personal relationships. Good to excellent personal relationships are THE FUNDAMENTAL FOUNDATION and basis for true and lasting success!


Over time, people—including CEOs and senior leaders—who focus on what they can give and share are inevitably far more successful than those who focus on what they can get and take. This is a fundamental, eternal principal for achieving and maintaining greater true success in any area or endeavor.


In fact, in the article referred to above, Martin writes, “This insight echoes one from Adam Grant, who notes in his book Give and Take that people who focus more on giving than on taking in the interpersonal realm do better, in the end, than those who focus on maximizing their own position.”


Are you focused on giving and sharing? Or, are you focused on getting and taking? Your focus will determine your life, leadership, legacy, and success—or lack thereof!


Copyright © 2016 by Dan Nielsen –

About the Author

Dan Nielsen
About Dan Nielsen Dan Nielsen is the author of the books Presidential Leadership (2013) and Be An Inspirational Leader (2016). He regularly writes and speaks on the topics of Leadership Excellence and Achieving Greater Success, and is available to deliver keynote presentations or facilitate discussions for your organization. For more info, please visit or email Dan at

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