Most salespeople never read a single book on sales. Most business people don’t read books on business either, with the exception of enlightened leaders who are future-oriented and recognize the great power in reading. Over 33 percent of people never read a book again after completing high school.
Worse, neither salespeople nor businesspeople take courses that help them to develop personally and professionally. A lot of people attend webinars, but that’s usually a narrowly-focused answer to a question or two, not a real development plan.
Information is not power. It’s potential power. As the rate of knowledge increases, we are all being left woefully behind. There may not be a way to keep pace, but you must try not to let the gap grow so big as to make you irrelevant. Then, you must do something with what you learn.
- Learning is the key to growth. New knowledge can create new opportunities. What could you learn now that would enable you to create a better outcome in some area of your life? What could you learn that would allow you take your career to the next level—or maybe even start a new one?
- Learning is the key to a greater vision. It’s impossible to understate the value of vision. Until you learn what is possible, your vision will always be too small. New insights and new possibilities translate to new ideas, and even new businesses. Knowledge enables a bigger vision.
- Learning is the key to strategy. The difficult work in sales or in business is strategy. Strategy requires that you think, that you consider scenarios, that you explore different possibilities. But potential strategies and scenarios will evade you if you aren’t taking in new knowledge and making new connections.
The price of not learning is high. Very high. Very, very, very high.
- The failure to learn will cause you to stagnate, doing what you’ve always done, and getting the same old results you’ve always gotten.
- Refusing to spend time learning cuts you off from a greater vision. How can you see when you keep your eyes, ears, and mind closed to new ideas, new discoveries, and new knowledge?
- Effective strategies require context. The strategist has to look outside to discover what is known, what is new, and what is relevant. They need to understand the current environment in which they compete, as well as how their competitors are responding.
Learning takes time. It takes effort and energy. Some forms of learning require money, and in some cases, a lot of money. It sounds difficult.
If you believe that learning is difficult, contrast that with how difficult is to succeed in a world where changes are faster, more frequently, and more disruptive.
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