Geralyn Wichers

"Life is a great adventure, or nothing"

If you’re like me and never finished–or never started–your degree, and now feel like you missed the bus, I’d like to encourage you with this quote by business leader and author, Chris Brady:

“Those who deliberate, dilly-dally, hesitate, ponder, get bogged down in analysis, or have to be sure everything is perfect before taking action might do a very good job at what they do; they just don’t get much of it accomplished… It is almost always the go-getters who become the biggest leaders. To lead implies action, and leaders are people of action. There are usually people who have more talent, more time, more connections, more means, and more information than the leader, but the leader emerges to influence events because he or she takes action while others hesitate,” –Chris Brady, Leadership Lessons from the Age of Fighting Sail. 

I spent four months working with a gentleman with a masters degree in physics. His wife has her masters in mathematics. They are immigrants, and in the courageous way of immigrants, they took the jobs they could find so that they could begin a new life. So he is now a pharmaceutical coating operator like me.

But I do feel woefully undereducated, with my two-year diploma in Biblical Studies, when I compare myself to him. I’d love to have a degree–heck, in almost anything. In fact, I’d be a student for life it just paid better. But circumstances don’t allow that right now. Sometimes I get an inferiority complex because I don’t have the education, it seems, to do anything other than manual labour.

But there is something I do have: initiative. According to Mr. Brady, that’s a big part of being a leader. Initiative: something that doesn’t require a student loan, four years of school, or a certificate from the government. It just takes courage and action.

In a caveat, Brady says, “This is not to imply that all leaders are reckless or reactive–though some may be–but rather that leaders err on the side of decisiveness. Over time, the tendency toward action builds ability, so deficiencies of talent or means are eventually overcome.”

Or deficiencies of age, as I continually remind myself.

So, if you’re undereducated like me, take heart because, “There are usually people who have more talent, more time, more connections, more means, and more information than the leader, but the leader emerges to influence events because he or she takes action while others hesitate.”

By the way, can I just say that if you can get your hands on a copy of Leadership Lessons from the Age of Fighting Sail, do it! Anything by Chris Brady is worth reading, and this latest release is a thrilling way to learn leadership principles. If you are a history buff, you’ll love it. Find it at his blog, here.

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One thought on “Hope for Those of Us Without a Degree

  1. ashokbhatia says:

    So very true. World is full of examples of those who have made it big despite lack of formal education.

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