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No. 131: To Succeed, Creatively Apply What You Learn

Albert Einstein went through formal schooling. Did any of his school/class mates also become geniuses?

What about the legendary Afro Beat inventor, Fela Anikulapo Kuti (who studied music in a UK college)? Or Bill Gates? Richard Branson? Steve Jobs?

Why didn’t their classmates succeed like them?

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Click now to view the latest issue of Tayo Solagbade's Public Speaking IDEAS page

Publication: Weekly Public Speaking IDEAS Newsletter

Date: Monday 3rd March 2014

No:131

Title: To Succeed, Creatively Apply What You Learn

Author & Publisher: Tayo K. Solagbade [Tel: +234-803-302-1263 (in Nigeria) or +229-66-122-136 (in Benin Republic) ]

Blog URL: http://www.spontaneousdevelopment.com/blog

Archive (E-mail version started 14th May 2012): Click here to view

Archive (Blog version started 24th September 2011): Click here


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No. 131: To Succeed, Creatively Apply What You Learn

Albert Einstein underwent formal schooling. Did any of his school/class mates also become geniuses?

What about the legendary Afro Beat inventor, Fela Anikulapo Kuti (who studied music in a UK college)? Or Bill Gates? Richard Branson? Steve Jobs?

Why didn’t their classmates succeed like them?

Don’t Know About You, But I Have Always Wondered Why That Happens…

They all presumably attended the same classes, and were taught by the same teachers. And it’s not like those who became geniuses got extra coaching.

Indeed, quite a number of geniuses actually dropped out before completing their formal schooling.

So one would have imagined they’d have ended up worse off.

Instead, history shows they often did much better than those who finished school!

Why does this happen?

The Answer: Individuals Differ In Their Ability to Creatively Apply What They Know, and Learn

Genes may play a small role here, but it will not be a defining or limiting one.

This is why in societies across the world, we often come across many examples of people who achieve great things despite having little or nothing, in comparison to others who had everything given to them.

E.g. Persons who rise from rags to riches.

Knowing that they do not have anyone to depend on, they learn to look inwards and dig deep.

Sometimes they are so poor they cannot afford to attend school!

So they focus on their goals, and actively explore ways to progress, no matter how bleak things look.

And they never accept that what they want is impossible to get. This is a basic instinct that drives them.

They do not know how to give up!

Based on the Above, I Believe “Attitude” Is What Makes People Who Attend the Same Training, Perform Differently Afterwards

In 1997, while employed in Guinness, I attended a 3 day MS Excel training course, along with about 11 co-workers from different departments.

It was facilitated by a Microsoft Certified Professional.

On the last day, the facilitator held up a copy of a Microsoft Excel 97/Visual Basic Step by Step  guide written by Reed Jacobson, and asked “Which one of you is Tayo Solagbade here?”

I raised my hand in surprise. I had deliberately stayed quiet since the course began, despite my considerable MS Excel passion. So I was surprised that he knew my name.

Looking at me he said “The IT guys in headquarters said you’re the only one who will understand what is in this book. That’s why I did not bother discussing macros. But we’re giving a copy to each person anyway.”

You may wonder where they got that impression about me from (?)

Well, I’d gained company wide reputation for using self-taught skills to develop automated spreadsheet applications, that had boosted my department’s data handling and report generation performance.

And I’d done all that without having access to ANY formal learning resources.

No training. No tutorials. Just self-tutoring with MS Excel Help.

The IT guys in my brewery came to be good friends with me as a result. And word eventually reached Lagos etc.

Within a Month, I’d Devoured the Entire Reed Jacobson Manual…

I also explored all the CDROM Excel workbook samples that came with it, and promptly began creating more sophisticated apps for use in my department.

In contrast, those with whom I attended the 3 day course (despite each getting a copy of the manual, which was for everyday users), did little or nothing.

In other words, I was the only one who went away, and actually did something with what I was GIVEN!

But I Had to Do So “Creatively”, In Order to Succeed

It’s important that I emphasize the word CREATIVELY.

For instance, the examples provided in Reed Jacobson’s macro programming manual were for financial reporting.

I was however working as a shift brewer in the production department.

So I had to develop applications for recording, and analyzing brewing production data, for report generation and decision making in BREWING, and not FINANCE.

Those were two very different scenarios.

As a result, I could not copy and DIRECTLY use what was in the manual or the sample MS Excel files on the CDROM.

I had to sit down, study my unique situation, and then adapt what I’d learnt to suit my needs.

It was far from being easy.

And it was not something that could be hurried.

But I had the passion and desire to influence change. I’d identified a need to move from tedious manual report preparation to time saving automated PC based report generation.

And I could see that MS Excel could help me achieve my goal.

The above state of mind set me apart from my “course mates”.

In Virtually Every Area of Life, the Same Process Occurs

I read Michel Fortin’s Ten Commandments of Power Positioning for the first time, as a start-up entrepreneur in January 2002.

And I immediately realized the ideas in it could help me achieve long term marketing reach and impact in my business.

So I re-read it REPEATEDLY, as he’d advised, until I internalized the key principles he advocated.

Then I diligently put them to use in everything I did, to promote my products and services.

The success I’m recording today is in part due to my successful use of Fortin’s Ten Commandments.

Another example: If you decide to hire a fitness coach to help you lose weight, you’ll need to DO what he tells you, and apply your creativity, where relevant, to keep going.

For instance, if you are married with kids, and your trainer is single, don’t sit down and grumble saying:

It’s easy for him to say. After all he does not have to worry about a spouse and kids. Why won’t he have time to do sit-ups and push ups!

The truth is some people will be in the same situation as you, and still get it done!

Take my example…

For years while still based in Lagos, Nigeria, I adapted in whatever ways I felt necessary, to ensure I NEVER missed my daily exercise routine.

And that included waking up BEFORE the kids did, and also WAITING till they all went to bed.

But when it was not possible to avoid them, I soon found it was best to simply ask the kids to join me!

Along with other distractions they created, my 3 year old was fond of climbing on my back as I did my push-ups.

Rather than get upset, I decided to use her as added weight – making my exercise regime tougher and at the same time fun-filled ;-)))

I’ve also used the same approach for getting my work done i.e. writing, and spreadsheet programming.

Don’t Expect Life to Present You the Same Challenges You Were Given in the Classroom (or Your Textbook)!

That would be naïve…and childish…and irresponsible :-))

Those who excel often refuse to let (what Burt Dubin calls) “sloth, indifference etc…” prevent them from creatively making the most of what they learn, to turn their circumstances around.

Read the life stories of Einstein, Brandson, Fela Kuti (who created, and used Afro Beat music to fight oppression) etc, and you’ll see what I mean.

They took what every other person already knew (or had access to), and used it differently (i.e. creatively), to achieve their goals.

In fact Fela’s legendary achievements – despite facing great adversity  for decades came mainly from doing that!

Successful coaches and mentors in all fields will confirm this to be true. Even in football.

Not every product of a football academy ends up being a Didier Drogba, Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo. Very often, those who get to the top of the pile add creativity and persistence to the mix!

I’ve devoted countless hours to learning about writing and public speaking (e.g. from experts like Burt Dubin), towards developing strategies for marketing what I do.

At a point, my unique experiences trying to apply what I learnt, led me to develop what I call my Public Speaking for Business Marketing System™ (which I’ve used to win high paying clients).

I also wrote:Proven Techniques (And Strategies) You Can Use To Start and Finish Writing ANYTHING”.

These, along with other creative efforts, helped me relentlessly build marketing reach and impact on, and off the web. The resulting name recognition has led to sales of my products and services.

Key point: Rather than simply transplant them, I found ways to ADAPT the ideas I learnt about, to suit my unique situation!

And It’s a Continuous Process: Your Subsequent Efforts BUILD on Past Ones

That way, nothing is wasted!

As an expert in your field, you want potential clients to choose you over competitors.

Start creatively applying what you know, and anything you learn, so you can perform at a superior level.

This includes adapting whatever you pick up from a (formal or informal) mentor or coach, to suit the unique circumstances you encounter, at any point in time.

Do it right, and sooner than later, success will be yours.

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So, with with diligent persistent application of what you learn you’ll start (as Burt says)…”bringing home high speaking fees”…whether you speak or not…in a matter of weeks….

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Have a great week :-))

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Mobile: +234-803-302-1263 (in Nigeria) or +229-66-122-136 (in Benin Republic)

http://www.spontaneousdevelopment.com

Self-Development/Performance Enhancement SpecialistTayo Solagbade – works as a multipreneurial freelance writer providing  zero risk article and report writing support for website owners, while travelling slowly across West Africa as a Location Independent Multipreneur.

He’s presently based in Benin Republic, where he’s preparing an English-French Language Guide, City Travel Guides, and a Commercial Rabbit Farming Guide.

He earns multiple streams of income providing clients with performance improvement training/coaching, custom MS Excel-VB solutions, web marketing systems, freelance writing services, and best practice extension support services (for farm business owners).

In a previous life, before leaving to become self-employed, Tayo served for seven years as a high performing manager in Guinness Nigeria. He rose from Shift Brewer, to Training & Technical Development Manager, then later acted in senior management roles as Production Manager and Technical Manager.

When he’s not amazing clients with his superhuman skills (wink), Tayo works as the creative force behind his Self-Development Nuggets™ blog, and Public Speaking IDEAS newsletter (which he publishes to promote Burt Dubin’s Public Speaking Mentoring service to experts working across the African continent).

For a limited time, Tayo is available to speak to your group or organization for a moderate fee. Send e-mail to tayo at tksola dot com. You can also visit www.tksola.com to learn more.

Connect with him on Twitter @tksola.com and Facebook.

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Smart Exercising Will Keep You Fit, Healthy and Alive - Click to read
Self-Development/Performance Enhancement Specialist - Tayo Solagbade - works as a multipreneurial freelance writer providing zero risk article and report writing support for website owners, while travelling slowly across West Africa as a Location Independent Multipreneur. 

 

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“Tayo, I honestly believe you are one of those who will succeed at anything he does. Your commitment and effort has been outstanding….Thanks for all your hard work since I’ve been here – you will be sorely missed. I don’t need to wish you good luck, you have the ability to make your own luck. – Andy”(R. Jones)*

*Operations Manager, Guinness Nigeria Plc Benin Brewery, December 2001 (Handwritten comments in farewell/xmas cards sent to Tayo Solagbade following his resignation to start his own business).

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[IMPORTANT: This blog's contents are being updated following the transfer to www.tayosolagbade.com from my former domain - Spontaneousdevelopment.com. As a result, some parts of it may not work properly for now. Quick Tip: If a link contains "spontaneousdevelopment.com", simply change it to "tayosolagbade.com" - and it should work. This applies to article links as well as image links. Work continues to update the links(in over 500 articles). Tayo K. Solagbade.]

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Tayo K. Solagbade*
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