I’ve met far too many people who have the misconception that education is something that ends when you receive your diploma or degree. I beg to differ because that’s just not the case—you don’t have to be enrolled in school or a formal training program in order to learn.
Since beginning my own internet business I’ve realized first-hand that self-education is necessary for success. Even though I’m no longer in school, I need to continually learn about new concepts and new methods that are available—methods that can help my business. If I fall behind the times, my company will suffer and my income will suffer. If you don’t take the time to ask questions about things and learn how and why they work, you’ll grow stagnant.
Make Learning Mandatory
Several months ago, I wrote a piece about the Japanese belief known as the Kaizan principle and a man named W. Edwards Deming.
Kaizan, the Japanese word for improvement, is a philosophy which deals with continuous improvement. The Japanese apply Kaizan to early all aspects of their lives; they embrace the philosophy and focus on making things better. W. Edwards Deming was an American best known for his work with Japanese auto makers. He taught them how to improve designs, quality and testing, and therefore their sales. He is considered a hero in Japan.
One of the best quotes I have read recently came out of the mouth of W. Edwards Deming: “Learning is not compulsory, but neither is survival.”
In short, if you do not strive to improve or refuse to help yourself go “above and beyond” by learning new things, you’ll wind up stuck in a place that you probably won’t enjoy. If you make learning mandatory and force yourself to learn, you’ll be able to grow and prosper with the best of ‘em.
How Do You Learn?
I find that reading is one of the easiest ways to learn and improve. At any given time, I can walk into a bookstore or hit up Amazon and find at least a dozen books that would help me out. Books aren’t the only thing to read; the internet is chock-full of valuable resources. There are free e-books and tons of prestigious colleges and universities are even offering free classes online with the use of opencourseware. Seriously, you can learn from Ivy League professors at home in your pajamas.
Once you realize that information is readily available, it’s up to you to take the initiative. Set aside an hour or two each week to “study,” or if you don’t mind “real school” there’s nothing to say you can’t sign up for a local class in order to improve yourself.
What do you do to learn and improve? Share your thoughts and ideas with me below!Take Action. Get Results.