Make mistakes stepping stones to success

SUCCESSFUL businesspeople understand how to do things correctly.

SUCCESSFUL businesspeople understand how to do things correctly.

However, I can assure you that at the beginning of their careers they made many mistakes, but will have learnt from these, either with the help of a colleague or from the consequences and costs related to the mistakes.

There is nothing wrong with making mistakes, as long as we learn from them to avoid making them again.

This reminds me of a lesson I learnt early in life. I loved and still do love chocolate cake and when I was about 8-years-old there was a lady across the road who taught me how to bake a cake.

One Sunday morning I got up early, went into the kitchen and proceeded to put my baking lesson into practice while the rest of my family slept on. In those days - and I'm not sure if it's the same today - the secret of a cake rising was baking powder.

After baking the cake for some time I stuck a knitting needle into the centre to see if it was cooked through and to my utter dismay the whole cake collapsed!

When I explained each stage of the baking to my neighbour, she told me that two teaspoons of baking powder was not two tablespoons, but two teaspoons.

It was then that I realised how important it was to get all your ingredients right. The same principles apply to being successful in business and personal lives.

I'd like to share with you what I have learnt from many successful people:

lChoose your industry carefully and believe in what you are doing

lGain as much knowledge about the industry as you can

lThis knowledge will empower you and give you the confidence you will need to tackle competition, overcome obstacles and achieve your objectives

lHard work is important. One only has to look at the long hours that many executives keep to realise that no part-time jobs will ever create long standing success and rewards.

There is a big difference between intelligence, which you can learn from a book or educational institution and intellect, which is common sense and ability to decide, judge, reason and think.

Another question that comes to mind is, "What separates really successful people from those who just meander through life?"

Robbie Brozin of Nando's fame recently told a group of young aspiring professionals: "There are no extraordinary people, only ordinary people doing extraordinary things".

How right he is.

Here are the additional ingredients required to ensure your cake rises evenly. Add them to the mix to round off your recipe: Enthusiasm, energy, i nnovation and un-inhibition and passion and commitment.

So, I advise you to always stick to the recipe and add the right ingredients, in the right quantities, at the right time and you will have more to invest, which will, in turn, give you a greater nest egg and the ability to become financially independent.

l The writer is financial adviser of Bryan Hirsch Colley and Associates. You can either e-mail or telephone 011-880-4888.