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4th Step Toward Riches

As I was travelling to Sydney for the Mind Body Spirit Festival where I was promoting my latest work recently, I pulled out my favourite book from my handbag and began reading Chapter 5 of  ‘Think and Grow Rich’. 

It is titled  ‘Personal Experiences or Observations’.  It was by far no coincidence that I just happened to read that particular chapter because the information in that chapter was vital to what I would experience those few days at Sydney.

Napoleon Hill discusses that there are two kinds of knowledge: one is general and the other is specialized.  General knowledge, regardless of how much of it you may have, is of little use in the accumulation of money.  You only need to look at teachers – they have a wealth of information, yet do not possess the equivalent in money.

And something of significance that Napoleon Hill touches on is how educational institutions were not teaching  children are not taught  “HOW TO ORGANIZE AND USE KNOWLEDGE AFTER THEY ACQUIRE IT!’  If Napoleon was here today I would tell him ” not much has changed today!”

In this chapter 4th step toward riches, Napoleon gave many examples of people who did not necessarily posses the knowledge they required, however were clever enough  to call on the expertise of those that did have the knowledge. 

In fact he tells of a story about Henry Ford who had little ‘schooling’ and during WorldWar II, a Chicago newspaper published certain editorials in which Henry Ford was called ” an ignorant pacifist”.

Mr Ford took great objection to this and brought a law suit against the paper for this.  When he was tried in Court Mr Ford was placed on the witness stand by the lawyers for the paper so that they could ‘prove’ that Mr Ford was in fact an ignorant man.

So a series of questions began such as ” who was Benedict Arnold?”, How many soldiers did the British send over the America to put down the Rebellions of 1776?” and finally after a considerable amount of questions Mr Ford became tired of this.

In reply to a particularly offensive question Mr Ford answered:

” If I should really WANT to answer the foolish question you have just asked, or any of the other questions you have been asking me, let me remind you that I have a row of electric push-buttons on my desk, and by pushing the right button, I can summon to my aid men who can answer ANY question I desire to ask concerning the business to which I am devoting most of my efforts.  Now, will you kindly tell me WHY I should clutter up my mind with general knowledge, for the purpose of being able to answer questions, when I have men around me who can supply any knowledge I require?”

Of course at that point every person in the courtroom had just realized that this was clearly not the answer of an ignorant man.  Any person who knows where to get knowledge when they need it, how to organize it into definite plans of action is truly an educated person.

So in short, it pays to know where to get the information you require – do your homework, research, observations so to speak. 

I used this information as I made my way through the convention centre that Friday morning at the Sydney Mind Body Spirit Festival.  I made observations of what attracted people to a particular stall or person, what they walked straight past.  I talked with nearly every person who was selling or promoting a product or products. 

I literally took notes, asked questions, asked for phone numbers, emails, contacts and whatever other information I felt was pertinent and would be of use to me in the future for marketing.  You see I have little if any marketing skills, but like Henry Ford I do know that it pays to know WHERE to get knowledge when I need it, and HOW to organize it into definite plans of action.


3 Responses

  1. I read the Napoleon Hill Ford’s story…. I found not any references to any newspaper. I tried to find the Court case in google but I have found nothing. Could you help me to find if this story have any part of true? (other than Napoleon’s imagination)

  2. Interesting post. Thanks for sharing it. Safe travels

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