I had the great opportunity to hear Terry Watson speak at the PAR District One conference last week and I was blown away. I'd never heard of Terry before, but he's got quite a resume and he's a very gifted speaker; the type of person who takes control of a room and really lights it up. Terry talked a lot about the importance of learning, which we all know and appreciate, but said something so profound the entire room erupted in nervous laughter. He told the story of conducting a class at a competing firm in his native Chicago and during the class he was asked why he was willing to share his knowledge with the competition. Terry replied, "Because they're paying me a lot of money and you're not going to do what I tell you anyway!"
How many times have you gone to a class or seminar, gathered some incredible information you thought would completely change your business, and then put the book on the bookshelf or your desk and never opened it again? I've done this experiment many times, hoping osmosis or something would make the information seep through the desk, up into my keyboard, and into my fingers and brain by some kind of magic and exclusive phenomenon! It doesn't, which is why I've pulled out my notes from Terry's talk today so that I can put them into action. Get in the habit of putting some time aside to work 'on' your business. Yes, the day after you come back from a class you've got 75 e-mails and 30 phone messages, so take the time to get caught up. But put some time in your schedule later in the day or the next morning to review your notes and the materials you've been given and figure out the two or three things that you learned that will make it worth the time (and money!)you spent to attend.
Remember, Education without coaching and implementation is entertainment!