Week 16: Cold, Hard Truth.
This week, we’re learning about the cold, hard truth: it’s all about the money. I have to say I’m definitely a cult fan of CBC’s Dragon’s Den. If you’re not into it, it’s fascinating TV - watching an entrepreneur pitch their business idea to a group of investors who are either about to validate hard work, or toss a bad idea to the curb - and changing lives in the process. Very interesting TV. So as you might imagine, I was definitely looking forward to learning about how a self-made millionaire got to where he is today (standing on a heap of money) when I picked up Kevin O’Leary’s autobiography, Cold Hard Truth: On Business, Money & Life.
I learned a few really, really important tips for someone like me who is working to jump start their career.
First - if you move fast, can’t stand red tape, live off of the buzz of being fully responsible for something big and risky, and are totally comfortable blurring the lines of your business and personal life, then you might just be born to be an entrepreneur. This was an “aha” moment for myself.
Second - even if you can’t see how this moment fits into the big picture of your career, just keep moving forward. This is key for someone like me who is building their reputation, their CV, and their network. It might not make total sense right now, but everything you do adds another piece to the lining of your nest. He referred to his years of seriously grinding and scraping along, of 16 hour days and 7 day weeks, as the “magpie years”, which I can totally relate to. If I look back on the past 5 years, everything I have done has added another layer to my metaphorical nest, and set me up for the next opportunity.
Third - we’re going to get a little cheesy here - but be yourself. Be your own person, and know who that person is. The faster you can understand your own strengths and what you’re best in the world at, the faster you can learn to maximize this and find yourself a partnership that will lead you to capitalize on it. Don’t bother hiding the truth or doing something you’re not into - stand in your own two feet and you’ll be starting from a strong place.
When I bought this book, I also picked up books by Robert Herjavic and Arlene Dickenson too, so I’ll be learning about a few different perspectives on what it takes to be a dragon; or, at the very least, a reputable and recognized force in the world of Canadian business leaders.
Plus you know I love a good autobiography.
See you next Monday!