I was a child of the eighties, and I can vividly remember Harry Enfield’s character ‘Loadsamoney’ shaking his wads of cash at me while I watched him on my parent’s 9-inch, full colour TV screen. I can remember the news being full of stories about Yuppies who drove Porsches, drank champagne and worked in advertising.
I can also remember feeling ‘inspired’ by the thought of having loads of cash and driving a fast car. But I had absolutely no idea how to achieve it.
Fast forward to today
Today, my kids may watch a larger, flatter HD-enabled TV screen, but the messages from it are pretty much the same. Simon Cowell wafts million-pound recording contracts under the noses of potential ‘stars’ and the media is full of stories of ‘celebrities’ who drive Range Rovers, drink champagne and work, um…
My kids are entertained by some of this stuff but they don’t really understand it.
If I wanted any money, I had to work for it.
If I ultimately wanted to be able to drive a fast car, I needed to work out how to earn enough money to leave me sufficient spare cash to pay for it. There was no X-Factor at the time, there was no way I could become a pop star and and I didn’t have the face or body to get a modelling contract — so I made the decision to study business.
I already understood ‘business’ in practice, but the theory of business was great for putting work, and life, into perspective for me.
If I wanted to make a profit (to afford the monthly payments on a fast car), I needed to make sure that my income exceeded my expenditure. I needed to make sure I had the right skills that people would pay for that would allow me to earn good money. So, in 1992, I made the decision to study IT.
Developing the right skills
Since then I have earned a reasonable income, lived reasonably well, and owned some reasonably fast cars. I haven’t relied on luck, just a desire to learn the principles of how to make a personal profit. I continue to develop new, marketable skills that ensure that my income will always exceed my expenditure, and that I am able to afford the nicer things in life.
Never underestimate the importance of continual learning and education when it comes to developing a career. I now co-own and run two businesses — Essential Business being one of them. I do not see myself as an ‘entrepreneur’ (and personally hate the term) but I have had to learn a lot of enterprising skills. My business, career and personal development now relies on my constant search for new knowledge about business — and a rock-solid focus on making a personal profit.