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102 Key Principles for Success

Principle 2 - Respect the Alpha Male

This chapter is inspired by Og Mandino's "The World's Greatest Salesman." I apologize for the sexist language as it doesn't sound as good with the term alpha-person. Also in the animal kingdom, Males Rule.  

The alpha-male is the leader of your group. It can be a female or someone with a gender-neutral pronoun.

People are grouped in hierarchies. This occurs in companies, religions and groups. To be successful you must  identify who this person is.

They go buy some of the following names
  • Boss
  • CEO
  • Managing director
  • Dad
  • Coach
  • Captain
  • Cop
  • Dr.
Show them as much respect as you can. Don't be seen even talking to people who the alpha-male doesn't like because it will be guilt by association. Don't challenge the alpha-male to a fight or try a mutiny because you will probably lose.

My most difficult times at work was when I violated this key principle. I had a boss named Shri who was a Brahman, which is the highest cast in Indian society.

I would argue with him a lot. One day I was fed up and thought "If you do what you've done, you get what you got." So I knew I should try another strategy. I decided instead of fighting with everything he said, I would just do it, even if I felt it was wrong. He tried to micro-manage me with too many details on the how to do something when he should have focused on the "what" and let me figure out the "how."

I decided to do whatever he said in the exact way he said it, but getting clarification where needed. So Shri asked me to do a task and I did it without conflict. Then another and another. All of a sudden things changed. The overbearing boss I had, gave me more flexibility to do it my way.

You will succeed at work if you're obedient to your boss. Don't challenge them and do your work the way they would or believe you should. Learn their unwritten rules and you'll be on your way to success.

At work, I manage one employee and to him, I'm the alpha-male. Recently, at a meeting with our manager, he said something that was incorrect and caused my manager to question my suggestion. This is a poor strategy for success. Also, I've been asking him to contact managers of suppliers who haven't delivered their content on time and he's been refusing.

The following is written in the style of Og Mandino.


I will love the alpha-male.

And what is an alpha-male? Alpha is the first letter of the Greek alphabet, so an alpha-male is the most important male or leader of a group.  In the animal kingdom, he uses his size, strength, intelligence and political skills to seize power and control the group.  He is the protector of the group. He decides who joins and who leaves the group. He likes members who back him up and hates ones that don't.

I will learn as much as I can about dealing with alpha-males as my Job Security is dependant on it.

In the human species, he is my boss.  He assigns me the work I do.  This alpha-male has lots of power. As there is power in a moving train, a fire or an electrical socket, respect power and learn how to control it. Following his rules will make me successful. I shall never go against him as failure awaits me if I do. Like going against a rapid is futile, so is going against my alpha-male. He is the breeze that will push my sail. Instead of trying to stop his progress by standing in front of his train, I will help load the coal to make the train move quicker. I will not be as successful as I can be if I don't treat the alpha-male properly.

The first alpha-males I met were my father and mother. They provided me with security, food, and shelter. The relationship I had with my parent's moves with me when I move into new groups.

I will obey the alpha-male and never fight with him. The next alpha-male I met was God. He has the same job as all other alpha-males. He has rules to obey. Each religion develops their own alpha-male who is better than all the others. The same way I love God and my parents are the same way I need to love the alpha-males in my life.

I will love the alpha-male.

And how will I know who the alpha-male is? He may not walk up to me and tell me, but there are many ways to tell. He is the person in charge. He is the person with the largest office. He is the one who hires and fires. He has the most power in my group. He makes salary and bonus decisions and he gives me my employment review. He is the most confident of the group and he has many allies. He can reward me for good behavior and penalize me for bad. He has a fancy title and makes more money than I do. He battles others to retain his position. He protects me and keeps the peace in the group. He chairs the group's meetings and follows my progress.

I will love the alpha-male.

And why should I love the alpha-male? Loving the alpha-male will improve my Job Security. Loving the alpha-male will increase my salary. Loving the alpha-male will get me a better bonus. Loving the alpha-male will reduce my chances of being laid off. I gain more by being with him than being against him. But what if he's wrong? Fighting with him will cause me stress. Fighting with him will bring out his worst qualities. Like a dog wants to please his master, I shall please my alpha-male. Like Friday helped Robinson Caruso, I will help my alpha-male. I shall never criticize him especially not in public or in front of his alpha-male. I shall make him feel good to be around me by giving him sincere compliments.

I will love the alpha-male.

And what are the alpha male's goals?  To keep his power and get more power.  To make a profit.  To be in control. To beat the competition.  The alpha-male wants to retain his power with as little effort as possible.  I will help the alpha-male reach his goals and this will help me reach my goals.  

I will love the alpha-male.

And how will I love him?  I will do his tasks first and with the highest quality.  I will do it as he would have done it had he been able to copy himself.  I will give him accurate estimates and will always deliver more than expected. I will never challenge his power or be a threat to him.  I will listen to what he says and never criticize him in any subtle way.  I will learn his unwritten rules and review them on a daily basis. I will treat him like a king and will always be subservient to him.  I will position myself below him.  If he sits then I will sit and crouch.  

Never will I criticize him or talk behind his back.  Never will I complain to someone else about his skills or management style.  Never will I argue with him. Never will I take the opposite position of him. I will anticipate the things he will ask me for and deliver them as soon as I can and be prepared for an answer. I will compliment him whenever I can to let him know how happy I am to work for him. I will try to learn as much as I can from him. If he makes a decision I don't like I will be very careful on how I approach him with this information. I will compliment him in public. If he mails me something I will read it. I will not waste his time with unimportant details. He is my customer and I will deliver him the best service he ever had. When the alpha-male says "Jump!," I will say "How high?"  I will do favors for him and spend time with him, letting him talk about his interests, never interrupting.

I will love the alpha-male.

And what if my alpha-male isn't liked by his alpha-male?  I will still support him but may have to support his alpha-male first. I will try to please them both if I can.

I will love the alpha-male.

What should I do for him? I will give him the best service he's ever experienced. I will give his tasks priority over all others. I will watch his back when challengers arise.  

I will love the alpha-male.

And why should I love him, can't I just like him?

I will love the alpha-male.

And what does the alpha-male want from me? He wants me to love him and help him to impress his alpha-male. He wants loyalty, He wants acknowledgment that he is the boss.

I will love the alpha-male.

And how will I become the alpha-male? I will do such a good job that my alpha-male will get a promotion and he will be happy to give me his job. I will practice the skills that make one an alpha-male. I will become a good public speaker. I will become good at networking. I will become good at office politics. I will become an expert in my field and get confident about myself.

I will love the alpha-male.

And what if the alpha-male doesn't like me?  I will love him anyway. Through love, he will start to like me. It may be a one-way relationship, but I will be controlling it. I will give him the best service he has ever experienced. I will examine my relationship with him and try to find more ways to give to him. I will identify which rules of his, which I am violating and make these into habits. I will anticipate his actions and always be prepared. I will no longer be jealous of his power for jealousy will poison the relationship. If I tried to patch up the relationship and I'm still hurt then I must find a new alpha-male to work for.

I will love the alpha-male.

And what if the alpha-male loses his power?  I will not love him anymore but I will still like him.

I will love my new alpha-male.

And what if I'm the Gamma male, not the beta?  I will help the beta to be as successful as possible.

Okay, that sounds a little creepy when I just read it. But it's more of a style issues as this is the way Og Madino wrote his masterpiece.

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