Risk & Business Magazine Branch Benefits Consultants Magazine Summer 2018 - Page 27

DAVID RENDALL loses focus and tries to do both. Their historical leadership in discount retail was based on the blue-light special, a symbol of low prices. However, they did not focus exclusively on this price advantage and began to lose customers to Walmart. Kmart then began adding designer products from celebrities like Martha Stewart, but wasn’t quite ready to shed their low-price image. This allowed Target to capture higher-income customers that were design conscious. Kmart’s failure to focus ultimately led to bankruptcy. They weren’t the best at anything, so customers had no reason to shop there. Their failure illustrates the dangers of doing both, of trying to be well-rounded. There is a compelling reason to go to Walmart, low prices. There is a compelling reason to go to Target, a better shopping experience. There is not a compelling reason to go to Kmart, so people don’t. This is very important. If you try to be everything to everybody, you’ll end up being nothing to nobody. APPRECIATION - WE SUCCEED BECAUSE OF OUR WEAKNESSES, NOT IN SPITE OF THEM “Every limit is a beginning as well as an ending.” -GEORGE ELIOT Dyslexia is a disability. People with dyslexia get letters and words mixed up and this leads to major problems with reading and writing. This, in turn, is a major barrier to success. Or is it? A recent study showed that 35% of small business owners have dyslexia. This is surprising because only 10% of Americans have dyslexia, but they make up more than 33% of entrepreneurs in the US. Another study found that people with dyslexia are far more likely to become millionaires. In fact, almost half of the millionaires in the study had dyslexia. Examples of wealthy dyslexics include Virgin founder, Richard Branson, JetBlue founder, David Neeleman, and Kinko’s founder, Paul Orfalea. The subtitle of Orfalea’s book is Lessons from a Hyperactive Dyslexic who Turned a Bright Idea into One of America’s Best Companies. Rudolph discovers that his nose isn’t really a weakness. In the right situation, a “foggy Christmas Eve,” Rudolph’s nose is an irreplaceable advantage. When the situation changed, the value of his unique characteristic changed as well. He didn’t succeed in spite of his weakness; he succeeded because of his weakness. Rudolph’s success was a result of a perfect fit between his unique qualities and the situation. How does this happen? What explains their success? Do you want to succeed? Find your foggy Christmas Eve. Find the right situation, the one that offers the perfect fit between who you are and what is required. Unlike Rudolph, we don’t have to just wait for the right situation to come along, we can seek it out or even create it. It seems that dyslexia is a two-edged sword. The obvious weaknesses are accompanied by important strengths. When asked if his dyslexia has hindered his business success, Richard Branson said, “strangely, I think my dyslexia has helped.” Experts suggest that people with dyslexia are often better than most at being “creative and looking at the bigger picture” and this can make them better strategic thinkers. Daniel Pink, author of A Whole New Mind, believes that some of these advantages might result from a greater ability to use the right side of the brain. They don’t focus on their disability. Instead, they focus on their unique abilities.  If you want greater happiness, success and fulfillment, follow these four steps. Become aware of your unique characteristics. Accept your weaknesses, instead of trying to fix them. Appreciate the strengths that correspond with each of your weaknesses. Create alignment between who you are and what you do. + ALIGNMENT - DON’T FORCE YOURSELF TO FIT IN. FIND THE RIGHT FIT. “Every individual has a place to fill in the world and is important in some respect.” -NATHANIEL HAWTHORNE Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was different. He had a major and obvious flaw. This flaw made him unpopular and led to rejection and isolation. It looked like Rudolph was destined for a life of pain and misery, but then the situation changed. David Rendall has spoken to audiences on every inhabited continent. His clients include the US Air Force, the Australian Government, AT&T, State Farm Insurance, Ralph Lauren, and BASF. Prior to becoming a professional speaker, he was a management professor, stand-up comedian and endurance athlete. He earned a doctor of management degree in organizational leadership, as well as a graduate degree in psychology, and is the author of three books. 27