Some of the smartest and in some cases most successful people I know are continuously studying and learning. I, like many of you have thought I'm too busy with work, kids and the list goes on and on to read or research and probably in some cases just like I do you are skimming this blog post and looking for the bold words so, you can take away the major points without any real commitment of time. A few years back I read an article about Steve Siebold's 3 decade study of millionaires around the world -- his findings he published in a book called, "How Rich People Think."
One finding has absolutely stuck with me over the last few years more then any other it is that "rich" people believe in acquiring knowledge. This is big! Our entire school system is focused on graduation from preschool, elementary school, high school and college -- complete the courses and be done. We work hard and become educated and feel accomplished. Against this classic education narrative why would anyone voluntarily go back to school or start learning again?
Here is the key - it isn't about formal education -- is it a about personal desire to gain knowledge from friends, colleagues, what you are watching on television or even reading in your free time. Siebold found that "rich" people didn't read for pleasure or to escape they read to learn. Just think business books, trade publications, academic journals and autobiographies of other successful people are all tools that will fill your brain with new knowledge.
If you are learning to get the degree, the title, the job then you will never have the time or energy to keep learning. And honestly, before you know it today's marketplace will pass you by. Sadly, I've personally experienced working with the business founder who at the start was the expert at everything related to their business they read the journals and did the research, but over time stopped doing this and had become cranky and annoying to their employees and in some cases their children who are studying and learning and wanting to excel in the new world of their business.
Like anything else education should be a part of your daily routine or process.
Consider trying some of the following traditional and unique learning opportunities:
- Books (non-fiction)
- Academic Journals and Articles
- Online Courses
- Educational Videos
Before you make an excuse on why you don't have to read academic journals or patents, think about this...if your competition is all reading the same best-selling books and popular blogs, then odds are that they are all thinking about the same new ideas. If you want to get ahead of the curve and come up with something game changing then why not learn something unique that no else is learning.
Today I signed up for an online writing course...when they said 5 - 10 hours a week I almost fainted, but honestly, I'm really excited.
What do you commit to starting to do today to increase your knowledge and grow your brain?
How can this knowledge help you to be a better innovator? Find out below how to turn knowledge into innovation stimulus.