Learning everyday is important across all disciplines, for entrepreneurs, however learning everyday is absolutely indispensable. Successful entrepreneurs are not made with the blink of an eye. Many successful entrepreneurs take years if not decades learning before they achieve their ultimate goal (s). There are indeed many ways of learning and there are also different types of learners. The most fundamental learning methods that every entrepreneur must apply, however can be divided into three categories, 1) Reading, 2) Learning from successful entrepreneurs, 3) Personal experience.
Reading good books is probably the easiest way of learning because you can literally do it anywhere and at any time. With all the technology that surround us today hard copies are not even needed any longer, you can have an entire library of eBooks in a 7″ by 5″ screen device. With eBooks you can easily highlight your favorite phrases, create notes and even consult the built-in dictionary for words that you are not familiar with. Ultimately the most important part about reading books is the quality of content and whether you are taking action or not. Always have in mind that “knowledge alone is not power, rather organized knowledge expressed in action is power.” I’m always concerned about what I read because I want to get the most out of the time that I spend doing it. Thus far I’ve created a list of 11 books that have literally changed the way I think and have made a great impact in my entrepreneurial career. Check my reading list.
While on a Skype session with the Entrepreneurship Class at Luther College Diana Kander claimed, “entrepreneurs are stubborn, they had rather fail themselves and learn instead of learning from other people’s mistakes”. Nothing could be further from the truth in my opinion. I myself do this very often, but is it really necessary? Yes and no, yes because we all need to have our own experiences and no because we could save a lot of time and effort if we simply make sure not to repeat the same mistake that someone else has already made. Learning from successful entrepreneurs is absolutely essential for every entrepreneur. You will not only learn from their experiences but you’ll also be able to stay on top of the game in terms of new trends, new markets, etc.
Finally how to best learn but from your own experiences. Although this method takes time there is really no better way of learning. Ultimately every entrepreneur will through this phase and it is important that you keep good record of what you have learned such as what you did well and what not to repeat in the future. Failure will come that is for sure, even regardless of how much experience you have, but that’s not really the point, the point is to continue learning, growing and improving your entrepreneurial skills every day.