You would have thought the cover of the book showcasing a lunchbook with “Curious George” written on it would have given some indication the book could possibly be meant for a “younger generation” – it wasn’t until the end of the book as I was examining some extras I realized that Guy Icognito’s book “Penny to A Million” was indeed intended for those who may be a bit younger. At first, I felt slightly embarrassed as I had been raving about this book for weeks to whoever I could (literally, everybody). But, after stepping back for a second I realized there is nothing to be embarrassed about – we can learn a lot from children if we pay attention and I have learned a lot from this book.
In fact, it fueled my entrepreneurial spirit even more.
The idea of this book is based around a young boy receiving $100 from his grandfather and using that money to start his entrepreneurial dream. He is much different from other kids his age – driven, focused and not afraid of hard work- but there is also much of this book that shows the kid within him and I think that is part of the power of this story.
You are never too young or inexperienced to start
The book will make you smile, laugh and in the end you might just find yourself feeling a little more inspired to go out and create your own destiny.
What I learned from the book:
Don’t get hung up on the small stuff
While this seems like a small lesson – it is so important. A lot of the times when we want something we get stuck in a planning mood (AKA the killer of great things). When this happens we plan and plan and plan….then plan some more but we don’t actually DO anything and really it is the doing that is going to get us to where we need to go. In this book Kelly doesn’t take any second guesses – he finds an opportunity, starts selling his products and then refines this plan as he goes. We are all afraid of failing and I believe that is why we get so hung up on the planning. A good plan can never fail, right?
While planning is key and we should all draft up a plan – the plan does not need to be perfect in order to start. Take the leap – just start.
Everyone Needs A Little Help
As entrepreneurs and really just humans in general a lot of the time we take pride in “doing it all ourselves”. Even though, if we stop and take a look at some of the most successful people and companies we can easily see they have help. Some maybe only a small team, others a huge corporation of people – yet when it comes to our business or life, we can do it ALL (spoiler alert – you can’t). In this book, we see Kelly hesitant at first to get help when his business reaches it’s ceiling but once he accepts help we begin to see not only his business flourish but also his level of knowledge as well.
Invest back into your business – always
It’s important to always remember to reinvest in your business. Even when things are going great, and you’re thinking maybe now is the time to buy that fancy item you have been eyeing up. It’s not. Your business comes first and by reinvesting back into your business, you can continue to grow and continue to create more revenue for yourself.
Never doubt anyone
Remember back in public school when there was the bully on the playground? You know, the one that scared everyone and seemed to be emotionless. In this book, Kelly ends up enlisting the help of said bully and he ends up being one of the biggest assets to his growing business. Not because of the fear he evoked but because Kelly was able to pull the characteristic out of the bully that no one knew he had. Turns out the bully was one of the best salesmen out there and we all know how important sales is. Needless to say, never write anyone off. You never know who could be your best customer or biggest helper/cheerleader.
In the end – this book brings you back to the fundamentals of life and business. In a busy world where there is a constant overload of information, being brought back to the basics is needed more than ever.
The best lessons do not have to be taught by the wealthiest and most experienced people – sometimes they just need to remind us of the basics, make us smile and remember to not take life too seriously.