One of the most lasting lessons of success that I ever acquired was the importance of starting, building and maintaining a lifelong personal learning discipline. No matter who you are; where you came from; how much money your family has or your formal educational background…nothing should keep you from learning if you really want to learn. There are libraries and CD’s and books and videos that are all free if you have the discipline and desire. But you have to want to commit to it. You can’t do if for anyone else, you must do it for yourself!
I have followed the writings of the great author, speaker and businessman Harvey Mackay for many years. He shares a great story that he received from the brilliant Larry Wilson, author and creator of the consultative sales approach. The story goes like this;
One day an entrepreneur took his young sales manager up to a magnificent estate overlooking a beautiful river. He then took him up on the highest peak on the property, put his arm around him and pointed down and said: “Look at that stunning home and gorgeous swimming pool! How do you like those fabulous tennis courts? Take a look at those beautiful horses in the stable. Now all I want you to do is continue to meet the high standards and goals I’ve set for you and someday, son….someday all this will be mine.”
I love this story for a number of reasons. If you are truly an entrepreneur you know that there is a certain satisfaction in starting your own business; fighting through the struggles and hopefully building a lasting legacy through that business. Every successful entrepreneur also knows that there is a huge learning curve and that the key is the commitment to learning and growing and building your knowledge base everyday from continuous effort and learning from mistakes as well. And when success does come then you understand how working for yourself has its benefits.
But even if you don’t work for yourself and are happy (or not) in a corporate job, the single most powerful key to advancement and creating opportunities for yourself is this same commitment to continuous education that successful entrepreneurs will have. You must believe that there is no satisfaction in just going to work and going home. If you should ever hope to do more; have anything better for yourself and/or your family you must have that burning desire to learn more; expand your knowledge base and acquire new skills. There are no laws against being a focused entrepreneur within a system. Don’t wait until management or ownership requires it, simply make the time to commit to a continuous learning program. Use lunch breaks; drive time to and from work; while at the gym working out or blocked time in the morning or evenings. You will reap the rewards at some point in your life and career.
Make learning a habit, no matter where you’re at in your career or life; no matter how young or old your are, there’s never a bad time to start or increase what you’re doing.
Don’t wait for someone to tell you, find the time and just do it for yourself!
If you need some help, let me know and give me a call or write today. That’s what I do and I’m open for business.
As always, be GREAT!