University of Southern Indiana

Entrepreneur's Domain: Successful entrepreneurs always keep a focus on learning

Taken from the April 2012 issue of the EBJ-Evansville Business Journal, by Horace M. Lukens III.  A contributing writer, Lukens is an instructor in finance in the College of Business at the University of Southern Indiana.

If we are motivated to be true entrepreneurs, we will be learning for a long time into the future. No enterprise ever succeeded without the constant learning atmosphere practiced by the owner.

But what do we need to learn? Here are some ideas and thoughts that have been accumulated in this great community:

  • Because a positive attitude is a major key to success and happiness, it should be on the top of your agenda. Books written by John Maxwell regarding positive attitude and leadership are a great place to start.
  • What is your purpose? What is important to you? How do you wish to contribute to your business and personal life?
  • What tools do you need to maximize your potential?
  • We create our lives by the choices we make. What choices should you be making?
  • Learning from our mistakes is great, but we can learn more from what works than from what doesn't. Be pragmatic.
  • Learn the benefits of doing good. Kindness is the grease that eliminates the friction between people.
  • Learn how little you know. It will keep you humble and motivate you to learn more.
  • Learn to ask questions. Question your assumptions, opinions and beliefs. A wonderful story on this subject is the current biography of Steve Jobs written by Walter Isaacson.
  • Learn to play, relax and take time for reflection. Take breaks to absorb what you have learned and balance work with recreation.
  • To get the most from life and your business and/or profession, study how life works, or the laws of life. Seneca, the Roman philosopher, expressed it this way: "As long as you live, keep learning how to live."
  • Learn your rights and how to stand up for yourself and others.
  • Take advantage of learning tools, develop the art of critical thinking and find other tools to help you clarify your thinking as you learn.

Remember, we never stop learning and the above thoughts and ideas should help you down the road to greater performance and success.

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