As you know already, I have been re-reading a marvelous book from Napoleon Hill called Think & Grow Rich. The new 2014 version of this book by Sharon Lechter is an updated version, aimed specifically at women.
I am now ready to write about the fourth step; specialized knowledge. As a quick reminder, in step one we confirmed our burning desire, our goal, our ultimate objective. In step two, we talked about faith, unwavering faith that you can and will achieve your goal. In step three we covered autosuggestion; how to use your subconscious and your thoughts to achieve your goals.
Now, in step four, we are going to get practical. Lets talk about what knowledge we need in order to achieve our goal. Since this book is titled Think and Grow Rich, we are talking about the kind of knowledge that will help you get rich. But of course, this step and all the other steps are applicable to achieve any goal, even if it is not about money.
There are 2 types of knowledge; general knowledge and specialized knowledge. Now imagine that you are starting your company and you want to offer a service to your clients. Knowledge itself will not attract money; it’s how you use it that makes the difference. As in everything, I am a big fan of making a SMART plan and having a clear and definite goal.
Let’s say you want to become a coach. If you just quit your job and with no training or certification, hope to work 15 hours a week and charge 200$ an hour and boom, you have your money coming in easily. The question to ask yourself is: why would people choose you as a coach? What makes you different? What proof do you have that you can help them?
Before you go and quit your job, make a plan. What do you want? If your goal is only to make money then being a coach is not for you. Being a coach means you care about the people and you truly want to help them. You don’t just do it for the money. And your clients will notice the difference. If I hire an executive coach to help me take my business off the ground, I want to know what studies he or she did, I will want to know their experience, I will want to know what kind of success they have achieved. If they are poor and barely starting their business, how can they help me with mine? If I hire a fitness coach and he or she is completely out of shape and does not understand how the body or nutrition work, how can I trust them? More importantly, why would I hire them?
Getting knowledge does not mean you have to go and get a Master’s degree. Knowledge comes in multiple ways. Find the one that works best for you, find the one that will bring the most value for what you want to achieve. Make a plan, list what you need to learn or improve on and go for it. Learning is a lifelong goal. You can no longer say you are done with learning when you leave school. In today’s world, you have to stay on top of your game and you have to keep learning.
Experience also has an important place in knowledge. Learning from a class or a book is one thing; practicing it, living it and using it is another. I would never hire someone who does not live his or her own teaching. I was listening to a French Canadian show about coaching last year and the person was meeting this coach to lose weight. It was obvious that the coach needed to lose quite a huge amount of weight themselves and I failed to understand why they would use someone who so clearly was not successful.
So in summary, confirm what you need to know and learn to achieve your goal. Make a SMART plan, and focus on the pleasure of learning and improving yourself and your craft. Then go and share it with the world and help others achieve their own goals.