Category Archives: Self Development

Teaching Entrepreneurship to Kids

The world is a very dynamic and complex place.  Developing countries are growing economically at rates that stagger the mind, and at rates that are increasingly putting pressure on our country’s ability to compete.  In addition, our homegrown corporations are increasingly tapping the talent that exists overseas on the cheap, which is creating a population gap of people who lack the skills that are necessary for organizations desperately needing to stay profitable.

Therefore, I will say it! If we are going to compete as a country, we will need to start making some dramatic changes now.  As a country that has experienced so much material wealth in the past century due to the successes that the American manufacturing complex helped produce, we are either in for a rude awakening, or a forced shift.  Recently, I came across an article on USA Today that mentioned how many companies are actually profitable right now regardless of the layoffs, and that on average, the countries GDP has grown.

What this tells me, is that our work force, and therefore a large portion of our society, is in need of retraining or more education.  It appears that the ideas and education of the past has not placed our population in a position that is not conducive to staying competitive on a global scale for long.

So we need to change, as a whole from the ground up.  Where does it all start?  I would say it all starts in the classroom.  We have students being trained in this day and age for being engineers, IT professionals, doctors, lawyers, and general laborers.  This is a problem it seems, especially since many of the aforementioned will be made available in other countries for almost nothing if not already, and the doctors and lawyers are so few in number that a large portion of society is going to have to wake up and activate themselves.

As far as I can tell, one of the most important developments in our population is going to be in the creation in more designers, creators, artists, and business people.  This is going to be the area where will need to develop and become to compete globally. It seems like the manufacturing sector is being overtaken by cheap labor, and in many cases so too the engineering and higher skilled positions.  Hence, we will need to make a shift as a country to being creators and business people, versus laborers and technicians.   So it is going to start with the teaching of business skills and entrepreneurship skills to kids, including art and design.  The teaching of these subjects as primary subjects versus secondary subjects like they have in the past is going to be our ticket. Of course this is only my hunch.  What do you think?  Feel free to comment to let me know what your ideas are on our countries place in the global economy.  I am curious to know, whether or not you think changing the education system’s philosophy on what is most important in preparing the future of America’s workforce is important?

Here is a great post that includes 5 great entrepreneurship education resources to help you get started.  To take a look [Click Here].

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Laws and Principles Entrepreneurs Live By

Pareto Principle  | Parkinson’s Law  | Law of Averages  |  Law of Association

4 Laws & Principles every Entrepreneur should know and live by:

The Pareto Principle

The Pareto principle is a very popular law …my guess is that you’ve probably come across it or have even heard of it numerous times throughout your life… however it was most likely referred to with a different name.  If you’ve ever heard of the 80-20 rule, or the law of the vital few, or even the principle of factor sparsity….then you’ve been exposed to the Pareto Principle.  Essentially this law states that, for many events, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.  And naturally this applies to a great many things and events especially concerning to the entrepreneur.  For starters….  as an entrepreneur….you’ve probably wondered why the distribution of wealth is the way it is….observing that just about 20% of the population has much of the wealth, while the other 80% doesn’t.  Who knows, maybe this keen observation on your part is the exact reason you are an entrepreneur…. so you can in fact make your way to the top 20% :).  This principle is also very relevant for the entrepreneur for purposes of time management…..20% of the things you do will account for 80% of your results while 80% of the things you do will account for 20% of your results.  I know…a bit depressing when you think about it….but this knowledge can be useful for creating and perfecting your plans of action.  In addition, the principle will come into play when trying to understand why some customers buy your goods and services, and why some….let me rephrase that…many, don’t.  So when 80% of the people you approach with your products, services, or opportunities say no….just keep in mind that it’s not you….and most likely not what you’re offering, and that it’s just a bit of the Pareto Principle at play.  Here is a great link to learn more about this principle and building wealth.

Parkinson’s Law

Parkinson’s Law is something all entrepreneurs should be aware of.  Like the last law… you’ve probably experienced this one in the past but just haven’t been introduced to it formally.  So…I’ll do the honors.  Parkinson’s law was first articulated  in an essay of The Economist in 1955 and has been made more or less mainstream by author/blogger/entrepreneur Tim Ferriss.  The law essentially postulates that…  work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.  So if you have ever had some friends or co-workers who were given an easy task to do with a somewhat large amount of time to complete….and yet they  somehow managed to stay extremely busy, spending an inordinate amount of time on a task that you could have finished in a day….. well then, you’ve been acquainted to Parkinson’s Law.  This is essential knowledge for an entrepreneur….especially those new to being their own boss and in charge of running their businesses efficiently.  The understanding of this law will help the new entrepreneur combat the programming received while they were an employee who wasn’t 100% vested in how long tasks actually took to complete.  Ultimately, if one truly cherishes their time and leisure, and doesn’t want to be a slave to their business….knowing this law is critical.

Law of Averages

This is a great law for us.  It’s the idea that probability will influence all occurrences in the long run, that one will neither win nor lose all of the time.  For example, If it rains every day this week, by the law of averages we’re bound to get a sunny day soon. This colloquial term is a popular interpretation of a statistical principle called Bernoulli’s theorem.  As an entrepreneur or professional, this law becomes important to you when  you decide to start going after the deals, the partnerships, and the sales.  The more you experience the no’s and failures in the pursuit of your ventures….the more likely you are over time, to experience that crucial yes and ultimate success.  A fantastic example I like to refer to, is the baseball player….  he strikes out 7 out of 10 times….and still get’s paid 5 million dollars per year.  The same success awaits the entrepreneur who  understands that with every no…they inch that much closer to their YES…and indeed their SUCCESS!

Law of Association

This law is often looked over for striving entrepreneurs but is crucial in moving towards the achievements you set for yourself.  Basically this is a law which suggests that we become like the average of the five people whom we spend most of our time with.  Meaning….that everything about you will average out to be similar to those five people whom you are currently spending most of your time with.  For instance,  your income will tend to be the average of your five best friends’ incomes.  If you want to raise the quality of your life, hang out with people who have already been there and done that…and who are living the quality life which you seek. If you want to become a better communicator, hang out with great communicators.  If you want to be more positive, hang around with more positive and up beat people. If you want to be a terrific parent, spend lots of time with men and women who have mastered the art of parenting.  If you want to start making at difference….get around those who are out there making some waves of impact.  So in essence… birds of a feather flock together.  But…do you know why birds of a feather flock together? It’s because they’re all going in the same direction. They share a common vision. So if you’re going after a goal, any goal, go and find the people who have already achieved that goal, or who are well along the path to attaining that goal, and then be with them, hang out with them, camp on their doorstep if you have to. :).  Joking aside…this is an important law to live by….so get out there and make some connections with those whose lives you want to be living.  And if you find your self in a situation where making critical associations with people is difficult because of your location, or because you just need some time to gain the courage to reach out, remember that the next best thing to associating with great company is reading great books.  It was Rene Descartes after all who once said “The reading off all good books is like conversation with the finest men of the past centuries”.

To Your Success!

“Our acts can be no wiser than our thoughts…our thinking can be no wiser than our understanding.” – George S. Clason

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Economics 101 – What are You Worth?

Wow! What a hiatus. Last month was an undoubtedly action packed one. I took a trip to Paris, got engaged, and started participating in a new flag football league all on top of the business activities I normally partake in. Of course the blogging suffered a bit due to “all the activity” and of course a small mishap which had my blog temporarily deactivated. However, the good news is…. I am back!

So today I wanted to touch on something that has been on my mind a lot lately, Economics. I guess I am really writing this now because of a certain essence that seems to pervade the internet, the television, heck the world. This essence manifests itself as a blatant misunderstanding of Economics and economic principles. It is an essence that can be summed up in a mentality known all too well as “The Get Rich Quick Mentality” or “The Something For Nothing Mentality”.

Now, it is understood that this type of thinking may never go away, but perhaps it can be curbed a bit through people talking about it or blogging about it. Who knows?  So hopefully I can save someone some valuable time by helping them realize that they shouldn’t start something if they don’t really intend to be in it for the long haul and put in the necessary work (and yes anything worth doing requires work). In addition it would be nice if this post could help save someone, anyone from quitting too soon…all because they felt their expectations were not being instantly met. (Hello…..things take time!!!)

So, here it is….a pithy point to keep in mind or to share with a friend/acquaintance who is suffering from this dreadful mentality…..

It is…that you can’t get without giving!!!! Seriously, there is actually a law of economics which irrevocably controls the system that neither recognizes nor tolerates, at least not for long, getting without giving. So….what this means is, that there really is only one dependable method for legally accumulating and holding true riches, and this without a doubt is…………….. by providing useful service.

Now how does one provide useful service and why is it important you ask? Answer….  first understand Economics! Which you can find a bit more about in this neat little video.  To your success!

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Wages Vs. Profits

profits

A mentor of mine, Jim Rohnwho I’ve been following for a couple of years now, uttered a phrase that caught my attention, more so than usual while studying  him recently.   He had such a strong and significant impact on me  on the day that I heard him say “profits are better than wages. Wages will make you a living, profits can make you a fortune.”

I found the phrase sage like.  I remember repeating what he said to myself  and then thinking about how truly difficult  it most likely is to get rich on just wages alone, and how readily profits can be made if we focus our efforts on accumulating them.  It was a pretty outstanding moment of clarity for me, and I still get the goose bumps whenever I think about it!

Following that phrase,   Jim Rohn went on to make a point about how profits  can actually change your whole attitude, even if you start part-time.  I really warmed up to his suggestion, and perhaps you will too, because he states that it doesn’t matter if it’s part-time on your entrepreneurial business,  your network marketing company, or your service business.

To Jim it didn’t matter.  To him it could be a real estate business, a tutoring business as a teacher, a website design business, a landscaping business in the summer, a consulting practice, woodworking, or a hobby,  heck, he even goes so far as to mention a business of hanging Christmas lights in the winter.   The magic he says, comes from the moment you start investing effort part-time into your own business, because it is then, that you will find how much more exciting it is to get up in the morning, look in the mirror, and go to work on your fortune, even if it is only a small portion of your schedule,… something like 10 – 15 hours per week.

How empowering  would it be, to be able to go to work on your fortune every single day rather than going to work to just pay the rent or the bills?    So you don’t get me or Jim wrong I will quote you some words directly from him when he says ” Now – it is noble to go to work to pay the rent, but if you could also parcel out part of your time – go to work to make your fortune.  Your whole attitude changes; your spirit changes. It is in your voice.  It is in your face.  It is in your gestures.  And then you can say, “I am now working full-time on my job and part-time on my fortune because I found a way to make profits.”

Wow….how amazing is that?  Slightly magical isn’t it?!!  What do you think on the idea of Wages Vs. Profits?  Have you taken any steps to learn how you can make profits vs. wages?  Are you teaching your kids these kinds of concepts?  If not, why not?

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6 Activities To Activate You

So I was journaling this morning and had a small reminiscing moment.  I am not too sure what triggered the flash of old memories but I noticed it took me back to a place that was roughly about three to four years ago.  What I saw was some pretty interesting stuff.  I was simply astonished by my realization of how much has actually changed in such a short period of time and I am not talking about the external world.  What really stood out from my memories was how dramatically my outlook has been altered and even more so, my approach to life!  And I think it would be safe to say that it has been at least a 180 degree shift and all for the better, which I am sure some of my closest friends might agree with. …. Hopefully 🙂

So, since I had this amazing flash back and since I feel all these changes I’ve made in the past couple of years have been blessings, I thought I might share some of the activities that I think I owe it all to.  So…here they are:

1.)  I started reading 2 – 3 books per month

2.) I started journaling

3.) I started meditating

4.) I started running.

5.) I started waking up early to do a Power Hour (1 hour just for me)

6.) I started doing incantations

Well, I sincerely hope the 6 activities that have activated me most will activate you.  Give them a try!  What do you have to lose…besides your old self?…..

To YOUR GREATNESS!

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