Good Morning. Few of you have asked what I read, how I learn and grow. Here are my five steps that you can replicate and make your own:
- Get Up Early, Exercise, Learn! I walk/exercise at 5 am, 3-4x week and listen to podcasts – from Dave Ramsey to Donald Miller, Andy Stanley, Mike Rowe, Inc. Uncensored, TED Business, and HBR Ideacast to name a few. While cleaning up, I listen to Alexa and the Flash Briefing of the day – you can configure yours via the Alexa app; mine include Word of the Day, Verse of the Day, Tech Briefing, and a smattering of other exciting soundbites.
- Buffet of Interesting Perspectives. I’m usually at my desk by 7 am, and for the next hour, I scan some 20+ newsletters I subscribe to; if something interesting catches my eyes, I’ll read it; I like the Morning Brew newsletter and read it every AM – Here is a link to subscribe. Separately, CEO Express has been my go-to aggregator of content for years.
- Best Way to Learn Something is to Share It! I schedule a min of 30 min to an hour each day on my calendar to read and write. Everyday! If you don’t have an hour, schedule 15 min. And work your way up. Key is consistency. Use Grammarly to edit your writing and post them online. I’ve found that a fantastic way for me to learn something is to try to teach it to others/share the insights from what I’ve read.
- Sometimes, Old School Works! With all that’s digital in my life, I still love the feel of paper – newspapers, magazine, and printed books! I pick up printed magazines – the Inc. 5000 and Fortune 500 are on stands now, and they’re full of interesting articles, perspectives on companies who are doing well. I also like Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies, as well as Fortune’s Best Companies to Work For. BTW, essential to keep things in perspective, as many of these lists are “pay to play,” heavily weighted by advertising relationships, and popularity contests. Don’t believe everything you read – I know for a fact that several of the companies listed are dysfunctional!
- Your Relationships Are Incredible Source of Insights. Start asking your relationships (the ones you like, trust and respect), what they’re reading. What a leader is reading will tell you a lot about him/her. Some of my favorite books, like Lords of Strategy, Value-Based Fees, or What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, I’ve read multiple times, and I pick up something new every time!
I’ve always believed as knowledge workers we’re paid to think. If we’re not learning, growing, and continually testing new ideas, how will we remain relevant?
Make it a great week,