Blueprint for Success: Do You Know How to Follow the Leader?
“I’ve decided to learn to drive,” the man said. “I bought myself this car, here, and I’m going to drive it.”
“Great!” I said. “What are you doing – taking a driver’s course?”
“Having a friend teach you?”
He gave me an exasperated look. “Why would I want to drive like everyone else?”
“I – I’m sorry. What?”
The man puffed out his chest. “I am a unique person. I do my own thing. I will sit in that car and figure out how to drive it, in my own way and time. I refused to be bowed by the archaic conventions of traditional driving.”
“You mean . . . like using turn signals? Stopping at red lights?”
The man put his hands over his ears. “Stop! I don’t want to hear it. Don’t tell me your way to drive. I have to do it my own way.”
“Fair enough,” I said, as I shook his hand and made ready to leave. “But do me one favor, will you? Let me know when you’re practicing.”
“Why is that?”
“I want to stay off the road during those times.”
They call it “re-inventing the wheel.” Instead of learning from someone else’s mistakes or successes, you decide that you’ll go through your own learning curve.
When you look at it in the context of driving, it sounds pretty ridiculous, doesn’t it? Well, it’s just as ridiculous in business.
We’re in the middle of my series, Seven Mistakes People Make Over And Over, drawn from my course Success in 5 Minutes. Today’s mistake is: People fail to seek or make good use of mentors.
Here’s the blueprint for success in using mentors:
- Find the right mentor. If you’ve decided to learn to run a farm, do you consult with your local gynecologist? No. So if you’re starting a business, find someone who has found success in your field, or who has an ability that you need for your success.
- Be open to what they have to teach you. Go into the situation with questions. Don’t argue; just ask more questions. Take notes. Don’t waste his time or yours.
- Show your appreciation. And make sure to let them know, even years later, when some advice of theirs pays off.
This is a hard one for some people, but don’t allow yourself to make this mistake. When you’re starting out, or starting in a new direction, you’ll shorten your learning curve considerably if you learn from others who have gone before you. Don’t let pride or a misguided idea that you shouldn’t “copy” turn you away from seeking good mentors. We are a community of people, and we all learn from each other constantly. Did someone teach you the alphabet? Or did you figure it out on your own?
Are you ready for your first mentor? Let me mentor you for 5 minutes a day for 30 days. I’ll teach you the blueprint for success and get you on the road to your future.