Friday, 31 August 2012

What drives some high achievers?

Online has a page summarising pieces of key advice that shaped 50 Famous Leaders. Here are 8 I’ve picked out.

1 Gen. David Petraeus: “Get out of your comfort zone.”
In the 1980s, a superior officer suggested Petraeus try something different intellectually, so he got a Ph.D. in international relations. The experience helped him become the top military officer in Afghanistan and director of the CIA.

2 C. Vivian Stringer: “Stand up for something or people will fall for anything.”
This women’s basketball Hall of Fame coach might never have had a career in sports if not for her father’s advice to fight for her place on a high school cheerleading squad, despite her skin color.

3 Tyra Banks: “Plan for the end at the beginning.”
She’s more than just a leading model; Banks also acts as CEO for her company, Bankable Enterprises. She learned from her mother that every project comes to an end and to always have a plan in mind for the next opportunity.

4 Bill Gross: “Two and two will always equal four.”
The fund manager of PIMCO’s $252 billion Total Return Fund claims the words of financier Bernard Baruch, who said there will never be a way to get something for nothing.

5 Howard Schulz: “Leave your ego at the door.”
The founder and chairman of Starbucks gleaned this wisdom from leadership guru Warren Bennis of USC. He learned to recognize skills in others to help him build a high-quality company.

6 George Soros: “Fight losing causes.”
Billionaire philanthropist and hedge fund manager Soros once met an anti-Communist dissident who told him he had spent his entire life fighting losing battles, which Soros believes sums up philanthropic work perfectly.

7 Bill Gates: “Keep things simple.”
This bit of advice was from one billionaire to another. Warren Buffett taught the Microsoft magnate to break things down and focus on the things that really count.

8 Reed Hastings: “Strategy is about what you’re not doing.”
Netflix founder and CEO Hastings has steered his company based on Jim Collins’ idea that having an effective strategy means making difficult decisions to not do things, rather than have a giant “to-do” list.

To read all 50 quotations please see here

Wendy Jones is part of Interiors & Lifestyle Futures, which provides business support to the West Midlands community of interiors & lifestyle companies. Find out more at ILFutures

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