I used really think that I knew about business. I thought I knew a lot. I was running a business. I paid taxes, did the “Marketing” thing. I was running a small business.
Now I can see, I really knew nothing at all. The worst part was, I can see now that this was never going to change.
For this to change, I had to change, and I was happy. Then my world fell apart.
My world was falling apart already. I just did not know it. Because I did not know it, I believed everything would remain the same. When it did fall apart (I lost my job), I realized that I just might need to change.
The biggest thing that had to change was an idea that I had. It is an idea that kills growth. People with this idea remain lost in their career paths, continually wondering why the people around them are progressing, and they are not. It saps energy, tosses challenges to the wind, and leaves its believers in the dust bins of life.
And at its heart, that idea is, “Things are going pretty good!”
The idea comes out in many forms. “I don’t need to change.”, “I am a pretty good businessperson.”, “I will take that class next year.”, “I am indispensable at my job.”
And this idea, this internal thought, lies in wait, letting old skills atrophy, and kills the ability to grow new ones. We don’t change, and the world silently passes us by.
It killed my ability to grow, and it is killing yours, as well.
So what to do about this?
Believe it or not, you can solve this by simply reading a little every day. Read about Business, about Marketing, about technology, about social skills, about management. Read classic business books, like “Good to Great” or “The Goal”.
How you read is your business, but read (or listen) to books.
But which books should you read?
I have a great method. Ask the successful people you meet, “What book in the last 12 months, changed your life?” When you ask this, you get a fantastic list of books. This list will begin to change your life.
And it began to change mine. On average, to better yourself, you need to read at least 10 books a year. To really keep ahead of the pack, you need 20. To Lead, maybe 30.
But start with one really good book. Find out what kind of books you like to read.
Novels? There are tons of good business books written like novels.
“The Greatest Salesman in the World”
“The Five Temptations of a CEO”
“The Richest Man in Babylon”
Just look around and see how many there are.
Book written from Data:
Good To Great
Built to Last
Books Written from other’s experience
Dream It, Do It.
Losing My Virginity (Richard Branson of Virgin)
When you consume these books, whole new avenues of possibility and direction will explode in your mind, and you will affirm what I know.
My belief in my skills, kept me from acquiring the skills I needed. The truth is, it still does. I have to choose to change every day. I have to choose to invest in myself every day. I fail some days. I fail a lot of days. I succeed a lot of days, as well, and on those days, I change.
P.S. My favorites right now are:
The Go Giver On Amazon
The E Myth, Revisited On Amazon
The Goal, On Amazon
The Five Temptations of the CEO, On Amazon
Great by Choice, On Amazon