Investor and entrepreneur Marcus Lemonis uses an unusual method to improve his business partnerships: he talks about his own weaknesses and mistakes.
In other words, he shows vulnerability.
“So often in business we think that a very proper and stern way of conducting ourselves as know it alls and macho men and women is the way to be,” Lemonis says. “But I actually believe that business is built on relationships.”
“Relationships are built on trust, and trust is built on vulnerability and transparency,” he says.
Lemonis is the CEO of Camping World, which recently went public. He is also a serial entrepreneur and investor who helps businesses dig themselves out of bad situations on CNBC’s “The Profit.”
Often in the show, he can be seen telling stories of his own business mistakes.
“The key for me in building these relationships with business owners is by starting by unveiling myself first and uncovering my mistakes and my frailties and my weaknesses, so that they can be comfortable uncovering theirs.” the CEO says.
For him, opening up has a very practical purpose.
“Look, the only reason that I talk about the rough patches in my life isn’t to have people feel sorry for me,” Lemonis says. “It’s to try to create relatability between people.”