Michael currently works as a General Manager of Payments at Mitek Systems in San Diego. He has led business teams in Latin America, Europe, Asia, and North America and has picked up a few tricks on how to make that all work. He has spoken at several conferences and blogs once per week about leadership, innovation, and personal effectiveness.
I think a few things.
Leadership is one of those terms that can mean a lot of different things for a lot of different people. One of the things to do when you’re trying to establish and develop your own leadership capabilities is to focus on the concept of curiosity and the importance of it.
There’s an old phrase that I like–which is leaders are readers and readers are leaders. Being curious causes you to ask questions to hear new ideas that cause your knowledge to expand.
When we think about leadership I’d say it’s less about what I’ve done and more about the opportunity I’ve had to work with great people. Then figure out a way how we can win as a team. Leveraging leadership has helped me increase my output and in turn have more wealth.
Leadership is how to get other people to join together and increase output.
For example, if a horse that can pull 700 pounds is next to a horse that can pull 800 pounds–you might think that both horses together can pull 1500 pounds. But, the reality is they can pull more than 1500 pounds if they’re aligned properly.
I’ve done a lot of reading and that comes more naturally to some people than others.
But, even if you’re not into reading–time into learning about new things is time well spent. I’d like to encourage people to consider informational interviewing with people who are interesting–have a couple of questions prepared and write down their answers. I’ve done this in the past but not as much as I’d hoped for.
We’re all surrounded by interesting people. Humans love when somebody comes up to them and says: “you know something that I don’t, I’d like to learn about that.”
Reading “The Millionaire Next Door” has helped me.
I’d learned that wealth creation has more to do with your spending patterns versus your income. For example, the degree to which you attach your meaning to brands and objects that are perceived causes you to spend more.
Think of a shopping mall as the money extraction zone–not as a shopping mall. The whole point of this place is to stick a vacuum tube into my wallet and suck money out of it.
Early in my career my wife and I were saving money. There were times where people around had toys that we lacked. I live in the Midwest and there’s a lot of lakes around here.
People have boats, cottages, and all those sorts of other things. We passed on some of these things and saved our money until it grew–giving us the opportunity to do other things later in life. Things like traveling as our kids got older and doing other things we value.
I would give it away.
$1000 wouldn’t change my life but it could impact someone else’s. The second thing I would consider is looking for a couple of really good online courses. There are great courses out there for like 200-300 bucks.
The first rule when you discover that you’ve dug yourself into a hole is to stop digging.
Then seek out help. There are great resources like Dave Ramsey’s Podcast.
Start putting a little bit of money away. Despite it being small eventually, it’ll grow into a large amount.
It means a choice and options.
For example, I live in an area where right now we’re getting a lot of snow. Since I do a lot of traveling, I have now chosen to have someone else get all of the snow off my driveway. Having the money to be able to pay somebody to get the snow off my driveway is an option for me.
There’s that old saying, “do what you have to do when you have to do it. So someday you can do what you want to do when you want to do it.”
Chris writes personal finance and productivity articles for software companies. He gets fresh ideas through continuously investing in himself and interviewing successful entrepreneurs.