Keith Ferrazzi: How To Not Be Social Climber


Do you have any surprise projects that you’re working on right now?

Well actually, I have a lot of surprises. I’ve got a book that’s just in its final draft, completed. It’s a book about leading your life as a continuous learner – constantly curating your own learning faculty in your life. It’s one thing to network for opportunity, to think that everyone teaches you a lot about, but it’s another thing to say, “Where do I want to go? What are my skill gaps? What do I need to achieve? And who do I need to learn from?” That idea… that of course is mentorship – but the idea of really cultivating a very narrow and specific faculty, so that’s the book coming up. I’m very excited; it’s really on the space of what we call “Informal Learning”. We wrote it with 50 heads of HR of large corporations so it’s a really cool book.

I’ve got a really big book on behavioral sciences and behavioral change that is in its early stage of design and early executive summaries of the book proposal. And “Every Loan” as I mentioned is being rewritten. My foundation… I mean, my foundation is probably my greatest passion right now. It’s called Greenlight Giving. We’ve taken everything we’ve learned in for-profit business and we have designed a curriculum in coaching for disadvantage communities; helping returning vets get back to the work force by teaching these skills; helping Guatemalan high-potential youth who don’t eat more than once a day; helping them break through their cycles of prejudice that they don’t deserve to do anything more than what they see around them in the fields, but they can actually break out; even just generally teaching these skills to younger people – inner city kids. We have the whole program that uses rap music as the way we teach life skills to high-potential youth in the inner cities; prison recidivism – teaching prisoners to build the right network when they get out of prison. So this is where I’m spending a lot of my time on.

We just got a Twitter question. @AdamTsang… I have a feeling you have been asked this question before, actually. But he asks, “Do you ever eat alone?”

Infrequently. But every once-in-a-while, I like a little bit of meditative time, a little bit of contemplative time, and I do like my action films.


My last question is: for our readers, can you give out any words of wisdom that you live by or any advice that you want to give?

I guess it’s all stuff I already said, which is be generous and authentic in building your relationships but very guarded in the relationships you build.

Love it! Thank you so much for joining us today.

And thank you so much for your time. I appreciate it.


Follow Keith Ferrazzi:

Buy Keith’s Book: Never Eat Alone



Twitter: @Ferrazzi

Photography by Melly Lee

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