Recently, I’ve been listening to Stephen Bartlett – ‘The Diary of a CEO – The 33 Laws of Business and Life’ which is well worth listening to, I would recommend it to anyone developing a business.

He talks about a lot of things and the first 2 laws have really resonated with me. However, I’m well aware that I’ve immediately lived up to one of the negatives he talks about later – I’ve fallen into the trap of liking the bits of his book which reinforce my own preferences and opinions.

Nevertheless, he talks about having 5 buckets, and ‘filling’ them in the right order.

  1. What you know – your knowledge. By adding to your knowledge and because of your knowledge, you will then start to fill bucket 2.
  2. What you can do – your skills. You’re good at everything, but by developing your skills further and filling this bucket more you will then start to develop your network.
  3. Who you know – your network. As you grow your knowledge and skills, you will increase the number of people you work with and have contact with, so you can develop your network. Then, as you work on the first three you can start to improve your resources.
  4. What you have – your resources. Your capital, your team, and your time – what you have available.
  5. What the world thinks of you – your reputation.

Now, if things go wrong you can have your network, your resources, and your reputation taken away. It can happen in an instant. But it’s much much harder for people to take away your knowledge and skills.

He also talks about making an obligation to teach. We’ve run courses and delivered training for years and I’ve always loved doing it. I enjoy the interaction and getting to meet and deal with such a wide range of people. But I’ve always known that to deliver training properly I have to keep my skills up and keep ahead – because to stand credibly in front of a group of people, I must be confident that I know what I’m talking about.

Stephen says, in his 2nd law, that if you want to master somethnig then make an obligation to teach it. If you have to learn something well enough to be able to teach it, then you have to master it. Which means that the constant pressure to keep ahead so I can train people improves my mastery of what I’m teaching.

Finally, I now have a logical affirmation of this because unconsciously, and by no means as well articulated by me as by Stephen, I’ve been following Law 2 for years.

So, I’d really recommend reading or listening to his book. I’d be very suprised if you didn’t learn something.