The Importance of Continuous Learning and Training
March 24, 2018
There is no limit or end to education and training. There is an expression, “He who has not progressed gets old.” This certainly holds true with small business/SME owners/entrepreneurs. Researchers who have interviewed successful entrepreneurs report that they never stop reading. Some repeated the word “reading” more than once emphasizing this important factor for success and achievement of goals. A business person who does not continue his knowledge or seek constant improvement is not considered a pioneer because entrepreneurship is about creativity and innovation. This can only be achieved through continuous reading, training, and acquiring new information and knowledge in a given field. A successful entrepreneur establishes a self-improvement program such as the following:
1- Reading: Entrepreneurs should read books on business management, human development, etc. in his or her specialized field. Books can be purchased or leased through commercial and public libraries or available on the Internet. It is a good idea to consider reading best-selling books, as well. After reading a book, keep it as a reference, so you can refer back to it when needed. Studies indicate that reading a book more than one time helps to improve a reader’s memory. Even reading just a few pages every day will improve knowledge and memory. Knowledge is light and ignorance is darkness.
2- Comprehensive view: Successful entrepreneurs keep abreast and familiar with the developments in the field of his/her work hardly ever missing valuable information. He is always searching for everything that is new and interesting in his specialized field. Business owners and entrepreneurs can read newspapers, magazines, and news articles subscribing to alerts on various websites. One of the most important sources of news at the present time is social networking sites. You can even Google information related to new products and competitors, organize exhibitions, read published market studies, or update yourself on new laws and regulation affecting one’s business.
3- Educational achievement: Educational achievement is a key element in the progress and excellence of an entrepreneur. Although operating a business, a small business owner can still enroll in organized educational programs either through colleges and universities or other types of training programs.
4- Application: Studies show that the information we read is cleared from our memory after 3 to 6 months. Although this information can be retrieved from other sources, the most important means to obtain long-term information is through application of what is read and studied.
5- Skills Development: Entrepreneurs must have basic skills of business management such as communication, leadership, planning, negotiation, persuasion, decision making, and problem-solving. These skills acquired through education, practice, and training enable small business owners and entrepreneurs to achieve established goals.
To summarize, it is inevitable that small business owners and entrepreneurs should strive for self-improvement and work hard to achieve exceptional achievements. It is not easy to adopt self-improvement principles without true initiative and persistence.
Khalid Al Shanfari (Oman), ASMEC
Khalid is an accredited member in the AASBC, IAET, and Omani Association of Consulting Trainers. He works as an SME consultant in Consultancy Towards Sustainability Institution. He is passionate in helping SME owners to achieve sustainable success in their businesses.