When I was very young, I began my education with the ongoing journey through the (misnamed) “Three R’s” (Readin’, ‘Riting and ‘Rithmatic). In fact, for years I could never figure out why those key words were always misspelled. Nobody ever bothered to explain it to me, and I guess I was too shy to ask. At that time I knew nothing of alliteration (a stylistic device, or literary technique, in which successive words—more strictly, stressed syllables—begin with the same consonant sound or letter. Alliteration is a frequent tool in poetry, but it is also common in prose, particularly to highlight short phrases. Whew!) It also never dawned on me that R, W, and A (Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic) simply didn’t have much of a ring to it!
Anyway, I’m currently on an aggressive campaign to persuade the masses to adopt a new formula for success. This simple credo (A Latin word which means: “a set of fundamental beliefs or a guiding principle.”) is very basic and easily adapted to both your business and personal lives. The results are phenomenal! The formula is elementary.
Three R’s + Three L’s = SUCCESS
We can’t lose sight of the basics (readin’, ‘riting, and ‘rithmatic). A fundamental education is essential to a successful career in today challenging environment. However, a critical addition to this formula occurs with the addition of the “Three L’s”—Look, Listen, and Learn! My greatest fear is that these elements are so basic that they won’t be taken seriously. There is so much more to be learned by fully utilizing these simple elements.
LOOK at newspapers, magazines, blogs, television, video, the internet, local business, global business, your competitors, current trends, and your industry to name just a few resources.
LISTEN to your current leadership, your employees, your peers, your customers, your team members, your associations, your mentors, experts in your field, consultants, authors, family, neighbors, and the list goes on and on.
LEARN is the most critical element of the three. Anyone can look and listen but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they will learn from doing so. How many organizations, companies, and individuals have you known that seem to continue to make the same mistakes again and again? They don’t learn from their own experience nor that of others who have successfully attained goals or failed miserably in the attempt. There are numerous learning experiences provided to us on a daily basis, and few of us take full advantage of this tremendous asset. We often speak of the proverbial knowing-doing gap in our seminars and keynotes as well as the crucial need to close that gap. It matters little what we know if we do nothing with that knowledge.
One of the things we’d like to accomplish with this blog is to assist you in your pursuit of the “Three L’s.” We are constantly seeking examples, both positive and negative, to be used in our seminars, keynotes, and consulting relationships. We do so by researching all of the resources mentioned above. We’d like to share a number of those examples here in the hopes that you’ll be able to gain a variety of tips, tools, and strategies that will contribute to your search for personal success.
Caution: Don’t make the sometimes fatal mistake of disregarding information because it doesn’t come from your particular industry, area of the country, or from a business or person you may not respect or approve of. So much of our learning can come from the observation of those who have failed OR those who may entertain a different viewpoint than our own. I’d rather learn what not to do from the trials and tribulations of others than having to experience it myself.
There are lessons to be learned every day from every walk of life and so few of us make the time or effort to benefit from such a generous gift. We hope to make it a little easier for you here. By the way, if you feel you have a learning experience that you’d like to share with others, we’d be more than happy to review your contribution in the hope and anticipation that we can pass it on to others while attributing the content to you. Simply send your content to us.
One last observation for the record. Our “Three L’s” are all spelled properly … a lesson learned from a young boy who wondered for years why the Three R’s weren’t!
About Harry K. Jones
Harry K. Jones is a motivational speaker and consultant for AchieveMax®, Inc., a company of professional speakers who provide custom-designed seminars, keynote presentations, and consulting services. Harry's top requested topics include change management, customer service, creativity, employee retention, goal setting, leadership, stress management, teamwork, and time management. For more information on Harry's presentations, please call 800-886-2629 or fill out our contact form.