An Educational NewsletterGOOD MORNING!
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I love studying successful people. The things they’ve accomplished despite their circumstances and upbringing they overcome all thats ever stood in their way. I have a few favorite individuals i like to talk about, one of them I already have and that’s Steven Covey. But now, I’d like to tell you a story that effectively depicts the character of the man who created one of the largest companies ever seen.
That man is Sam Walton. Whether you agree with his company Walmart or not, no one can deny that he was an incredible person. One of my favorite quotes is by Bill Nye, he said, “Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.” In my opinion, there is no better quote to describe Sam Walton.
After Sam built his store, he left his mother to operated while he took his small plane out to his competitors stores. He spent hours and hours in his competitors stores. In fact, his mother claimed that he spent more time in their stores than he did his own. That’s how hungry he was for knowledge. Sam knew he could learn from anyone be they religious, atheist, a child, a senior, a parent or a prisoner. He saw them all as individuals with a small piece of gold hidden somewhere in their minds, and he wanted to find it.
So here’s the story. A few Brazilian entrepreneurs were starting a business down in Brazil. In order to cut the learning curve they decided to reach out to all successful business individuals in the US. The letter was a request to meet and interview the recipient in order to learn from them so that the Brazilian entrepreneurs could get ahead of the game. As one might imagine, they had almost no luck. The only answer they received was from Sam Walton (who was one of the richest men in the world at the time). He said he would love to meet with them and he told them to fly into a certain airport on a certain day and he would have them for dinner. They excitedly bought plane tickets and jumped on the decided flight.
Upon arrival at the airport, an old man drove up in his pick up truck and yelled to them, “Hop in!”
They immediately questioned, “are you going to take us to Sam Walton?”
The old man called back out to them, “I am Sam Walton!”
They all got in his truck and rode to Sam’s house where his wife had prepared a wonderful home cooked meal. The Brazilians began asking questions as they ate, which Sam Walton graciously answered followed by his own array of inquiries. Not far into dinner, the Brazilian businessmen realize that he is asking more questions than they are. It occurs to them that he invited them so that he could learn from them, not the other way around! Finally, they finished their dinner and met a little longer before going along their way. The Brazilian businessmen went back to their country and started a very successful business.
Some time passes and the businessmen receive a letter from Sam requesting to meet them in Brazil. They excitedly accept his request and tell him to join them so that he can see their business. The day Sam’s plane is to arrive in Brazil the hosts receive a call from the police station saying that an old man by the name of Sam Walton had been arrested. They immediately rush to the police department to get him out.
They begin angrily questioning the police, “Why have you arrested this American billionaire? What was he doing to warrant that?”
The police responded, “He was crawling about the floors of various stores and it was frightening people. We thought he was crazy.”
After bailing Sam out, the businessmen question him, “Why were you crawling around on the floors of stores?”
Sam pulls out a tape measure and says, “I was measuring the aisle ways in various department stores around here. I wanted to see if they knew something that I didn’t.”
Let me put that into perspective. This man made more money than Bill Gates (creator of Microsoft), Warren Buffett (Investor, third richest man in the world) and Jeff Bezos (creator of Amazon) COMBINED. He split it amongst his children for tax reasons, but he still made way more money than anyone else ever. Now think of that, how prestigious this man is in the world, and he’s crawling on the dirty floors of some foreign department store because he wanted to learn from them. In addition to that, he didn’t send some chauffeur to pick up the businessmen; instead he did it himself. If that’s not inspiring, I don’t know what is. He’s like the gold miner of knowledge. Which brings me to the challenge of the Day.
Choose five people today that you’ve never learned anything from. It can be someone you already know or someone you don’t. Talk/observe this person and focus on what you can learn from them. Remember, you don’t always learn good things from people. Some person whose name escapes me (maybe Abraham Lincoln) once said something along the lines of, “I learn from everyone. Oftentimes it’s what I don’t want to do, but I do learn from everyone.” So look for those people and those lessons. Then choose your favorite lesson and teach me what you learned.
That’s it for today! As this is a trial run, I am entirely open to tweaking The Morning Text, please provide feedback so that I can better cater to your interests. If you believe you have received this message in error and no longer wish to receive them, please notify me.
Have a wonderful day.
Written by Caleb Gibbons
Sam Walton- Made in America by Sam Walton and John Huey
It’s a great book, I recommend it to any person that has ever breathed EVER.