Robert J. Ringer, in his award-winning book "Winning through intimidation" divided people in his business life in three main categories:
- The ones that openly manifested their intentions of exploiting those around them under all circumstances, but would continue helping him for as long as he was still an asset to their agenda
- The ones who claimed to be his friends, but would exploit him on every turn.
- The ones who declared themselves his friends and genuinely didn’t want to harm him, but would do so when forced by the circumstances.
Robert purged the book from mentions about his personal life, reason why he probably didn’t list a fourth group of people would not take advantage of others under any circumstance, such as family members and close friends.
Through the book, Robert was quick to point type #1 as his favorite kind of business associate and boss, because being successful with their no-nonsense philosophy usually meant they were very competent and also objective in rewarding those who could help them be even more successful.
Although he had no kind words for type #2, it was people in the last group (“the type #3s”, as he called them) that received his harshest criticism, in that their initially genuine intentions disarmed him of his natural defenses and invariably led him to some sort of financial loss.