I was sitting in a simulcast of a John Maxwell event a few weeks ago, and John was sharing a conversation with Angela Ahrendts, former vice president of retail at Apple as well as CEO of Burberry. Toward the end of their chat, she brought up the best advice her father had ever given her, the principle of Sixty/Forty.

Simply put, give sixty and take forty in everything you do.

In everything, give more than you take. I haven’t been able to shake this concept, and now I’m looking for ways to make this a more significant part of my life. At work with my clients, partners, and team… At home with my wife, kids, and extended family… And in between with my close friends and my community. 

Give Sixty. Take Forty.

The “Take Forty” part is interesting to me. It reminds me that it’s ok for me to fill my bucket through other people. It’s ok to take sometimes – I don’t need to apologize for that. Keeping my self full is an essential part of being able to give my self away.

But on the flip side, and more critical in my mind, I need to embrace the idea of “Giving Sixty.” In essence, if there were a scale, the side that I am giving away should always outweigh what I am taking. I should continually focus on giving more than I take in everything I do.

In every conversation with my clients.

In the way I treat my staff.

In my relationship with my wife.

In my interactions with my kids.

In the way I connect with friends. 

The world needs me to give freely, give generously, and give with gratitude. I’m processing this a little more each day, and am continuing to look for ways to make 60/40 real in my life… Listening more than I talk… Being more generous with what I have… Sharing more grace than judgment… 

My takeaway for each of you today is simple:



I hope this met you where you’re at! Share it with a friend, check out the Depth Not Width blog and subscribe to receive weekly emails. I’d love to hear how you’re putting Sixty/Forty into practice!

– John