Laughter brings escape from monotony.
Sadness teaches us what is important to our heart.
Commitment carries us through the dark hours, the dry places, the sad times.
Enthusiasm, “God within,” opens our eyes to the possible.
JP Engelbrecht says a business owner can learn a lot about managing groups of people by studying famous monarchs. “If you manage tight-to-loose” says JP, “your people will build statues of you in the parks.”
I said, “What do you mean, tight-to-loose?”
“Begin with a lot of strict rules and policies,” JP answered, “then loosen them up when people perform well; give them more freedom and autonomy. Monarchs that do the opposite – the ones who manage loose-to-tight – are the ones that get assassinated. It’s dangerous to take away freedoms once they’re given.”
JP’s advice triggered the memory of a delightful video by Daniel Pink (which you’ll find on Page Four of Indiana Beagle’s rabbit hole,) in which Pink says we need just 3 things to make us happy:
1. Autonomy, the freedom to do things our own way.
2. Mastery, the ability to get better and better at something.
3. Purpose, the knowledge that we’re making a difference.
JP’s comment also reminded me of a statement shared with me by Eric Rhoads: “The best fertilizer is the gardener’s shadow.” Eric’s comment, in turn, triggered the memory of something Tom Grimes shared with me by email in the middle of the night exactly one year ago – July 29, 2014. Tom says the happiest companies are run by business owners who practice “Management by Walking Around.” You can read his fun and insightful email on Page One of Indy’s rabbit hole. (Just click the trio of flying children over Indy’s head at the top of this page.)
As you can see, I connected these thoughts dot-to-dot-to-dot and realized once more that the combined insights of the people in our lives can be an incredibly powerful thing. If we could collect these experiences and organize them to bring forward the best of the past, that would be magic in a bottle.
[This thought, wearing many different disguises, has been orbiting my brain like Halley’s Comet, showing up periodically in the middle of the night ever since Mia Erichson sent the note about the Trivium and Quadrivium that became the Monday Morning Memo, Glenn Gould Played Piano. ]
What this Means to the Future of Wizard Academy
Wizard Academy was established 15 years ago in a Monday Morning Memo. The things you readers have built since then are remarkable! No, remarkable is the wrong word. What you’ve built is astonishing. You stepped forward and donated your time and wisdom and money to create:
- a worldwide group of alumni and adjunct faculty that are positively electric.
- a spectacular campus with zero debt.
- a network of thousands of business owners who claim the experiences they’ve had at Wizard Academy have made a huge difference in the success of their endeavors.
The time has come for us to complete what we have started.
The good news is that it doesn’t take much money.
The bad news is that it takes something far more precious.
I need you to take inventory of your intellectual property – those techniques and shortcuts and special bits of wisdom you’ve gathered over the years – and send that list to Vice Chancellor Whittington. Wizard Academy is known for its ability to teach the “art” of running a business. The time has come for us to add the “science.”
Until we have done this, our school will remain incomplete.
What do you have – in your head – that you could give to The American Small Business Institute at Wizard Academy?
The ASBI will collect and offer all the left-brain, sequential, step-by-step, mathematical and procedural genius of its faculty and alumni to create a streamlined, highly accelerated “executive summary” business education spanning everything from management to bookkeeping to banking to taxes to human resources and contract law and all the dozens of other things that haven’t yet crossed my mind.
But I don’t need them to cross my mind. I need them to cross yours. Daniel Whittington needs your help to outline and frame and collect and organize all those “JP Engelbrecht,” “Eric Rhoads” and “Tom Grimes” bits of insight in a structured, step-by-step way.
Virtually every college class spanning a semester can easily be summarized in less than 30 minutes. Am I right? You know I am.
I’m asking every successful CEO, every entrepreneur and MBA and business executive – including you – “What are the three most valuable things you’ve learned? Can you articulate them clearly, tell us when and how to use these tips and techniques and best practices, and then finish your tale with a real-life case history including specific before-and-after details? Can you do all of this in less than 7 minutes?”
Some of you will have more than three things you can share. We’re counting on it.
Traditional colleges offer degree paths toward Master of Arts degrees. Similarly, Wizard Academy was built on what feels like an accelerated PhD in the art of running a business.
But colleges also offer Master of Science degrees. These are the sorts of studies that will be offered by The American Small Business Institute at Wizard Academy. Some of these new “science of business” classes will be on campus. Many will be online.
So I ask you once more, what do you have to give? Are you willing to write a focused summary and send it to Daniel@WizardAcademy.org?
We need your special gift – your secret sauce – even if it’s so small that it becomes a single 3-minute segment on video. This is not a time for humility. You know what you’re good at. Tell us what it is.
We need those things for which you have enthusiasm – “God Within” – so that you can help us open people’s eyes to the possible.
Roy H. Williams