My name is Evan Carmichael and I believe that the fastest and most effective way to build a business is to model the strategies of people who have already done what you’re trying to do. I call it Modeling the Masters.
Today we’re going to look at how a high school dropout and homeless man would go from living on the streets and bathing in public restrooms to building one of the most successful stock brokerage firms in America. This is the story of multi-millionaire Chris Gardner and the top 3 lessons that you can learn from his success.
“Find something that you love. Something that gets you so excited you can’t wait to get out of bed in the morning. Forget about money. Be happy.” – Chris Gardner
Chris Gardner (born on February 9, 1954) was the only son of 12 children that was being raised by a single mother. His single mother was trained as a schoolteacher, but wound up taking on numerous part-time jobs in order to provide for her family. Gardner and his siblings were transferred back and forth between relatives and foster homes. His mother had been imprisoned twice; once, for allegedly receiving welfare while working, and the second time for attempting to burn down the house of Gardner’s abusive stepfather. Gardner’s prospects were narrow coming from an environment such as this.
While on a sales call, Gardner met a man who was impeccably dressed and drove a red Ferrari. As fate would have it, the driver of the Ferrari was a stockbroker. When Gardner heard that the man was earning over $80,000 a month, he decided that his future lied in investments. He had no education, no experience, and no connections, but that was not about to stop Gardner from achieving his new dream. Once he had decided to become a stockbroker, Gardner immediately set out to find an investment firm that would give him a chance. In one brokerage firm, Gardner finally found a manager of a training program who was willing to give him a shot. However, when Gardner showed up for his first day of work, the manager who had hired him had been fired and no one else had ever heard of Gardner or his new position. He left with his hopes disappointed.
Action Item #1: Get Excited About Something
Action Item #2: Be the Best You Can Be
Action Item #3: Remember Your Roots
“Baby steps count, as long as you are going forward. You add them all up, and one day you look back and you’ll be surprised at where you might get to.”
“That’s when I learned in this business, it’s not a black thing, it’s not a white thing, it’s a green thing. If you can make me money, I don’t care what color you are. So that’s how I deal with that to this day.”
“I was Chris Gardner, father of a son who deserved better than what my daddy could do for me, son of Betty Jean Gardner who said that if I wanted to win I could win.”
What Do You Think?