Readers are leaders!
The fastest, most efficient way to achieve any goal is to find someone else who has already done what you want to do and study how he/she did it. Reading a quality “how-to” book (AND applying its strategies to your life and career) is the best time management strategy of all-time. Why try to figure out how to do something on your own when you could read a book that tells you how someone else already did exactly what you want to do?! Most personal development and professional development books are the culmination of years of research and personal experience by the author. In just a few hours (and for an average cost of $10-$20), you can learn what it took another person years to figure out!
Unfortunately, most people never read a quality book after graduating from college, and then they wonder why they are not achieving their personal and professional goals as quickly as they would like. While I am extremely grateful for and proud of the formal education I received by attending Johns Hopkins University, I attribute much of the success I have had in my life to the informal education I have voluntarily given myself after college. By reading (and studying) the best books ever written, I have reduced my learning curve throughout my career.
One quick example is when I started working for the Washington Wizards in 2003 in the sales department. Despite having hardly any sales experience, I became the franchise’s #1 salesperson (out of a staff of 25 much more experienced sales professionals) in less than 3 years. One of the secrets to my success was that I read everything I could find on the subjects of sales, marketing, communication, and relationship-building. Had I tried to learn on my own only by trial-and-error, there is no way my success would have come so quickly.
Books have been written on every topic imaginable, and while I encourage young professionals to read books on topics related to their specific careers, the following 10.5 books (in no particular order) have all had a huge impact on my career success, and they should be required reading for every student, regardless of his/her goals and dreams:
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
- The Success Principles by Jack Canfield
- Unlimited Power by Anthony Robbins
- Awaken the Giant Within by Anthony Robbins
- Maximum Achievement by Brian Tracy
- The Luck Factor by Richard Wiseman
- How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
- What’s Holding You Back? by Sam Horn
- The Magic of Thinking Big by David Schwartz
- The Psychology of Winning by Denis Waitley
10.5 Success Magazine: a monthly publication featuring tips and wisdom from the world’s greatest achievers, including many of the authors cited above.
Do you want to be a leader? The first step is to become a reader! Then, take what you learn and apply it to your life and career.
-Career Expert and Professional Speaker
-President of Idealize Enterprises
P.S. I speak about career success to students and young professionals nationwide. To learn more about my programs and speaking availability, please email me at Pete@IdealizeNow.com.