Most of today’s billionaires earned while they learned!
And maybe that’s one reason there aren’t too many in India, since many of those billionaires abroad learned a lot from the jobs they worked at even as they studied.
I’m certainly not anywhere near being a billionaire, nor aspiring to be one, but I remember paying my way through college, writing and selling radio plays, and working as a salesman in my dad’s company. All that experience has helped me as much as all I learnt as a graduate and post-graduate!
Warren Buffet whose net worth is $ 77 billion started working on his billion-dollar empire when he was just a boy. At age 13, Buffett had his first job running a newspaper delivery business. Already a budding businessman, Buffett even deducted his bike from his taxes that year. He went on to start a pinball machine business as a teen, looking for business opportunities wherever he went and graduating college with a $10,000 profit from his business ventures.
If you’ve ever watched an Oprah Winfrey show and think how lucky she is, Winfrey got her start in an average menial job at a grocery store next to her father's Nashville barbershop. She quickly made her move to broadcasting, reading the news for the local radio station by age 16 and moving her way up to the media powerhouse she is today.
Then there’s Michael Bloomberg, best known for his investment and political career, but before his success, he worked as a parking lot attendant. As the son of middle-class parents, Bloomberg paid his college tuition by working and eventually went on to graduate with an MBA from Harvard. He got his start on Wall Street at Salomon Brothers and is now one of the wealthiest in America.
And yes, the whole world knows Bill Gates, but do they know his first job was as a computer programmer for TRW during his senior year in high school?
And then there’s Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, most probably the richest man alive. Way before he founded Amazon and began selling everything from books to newspaper subscriptions, Jeff Bezos was flipping burgers behind the grill at McDonald's. He often said he learned one of his business’ most important lessons from that experience: to move things quickly from seller to customer without damaging the goods. And that’s exactly what Amazon tries to do!
Yes, college life is fun, and I’m sure nobody wants to lose out on that, but that fun can still be had in the evenings, after college. I doubt, from what my friends tell me, I missed out on fun, except time spent bunking classes and hanging out in the cafeteria, I hung out with my pen or briefcase, and have no regrets for the company they gave, and instead feel a deep satisfaction for time well spent!
Try learning and earning..!
Robert Clements is a newspaper columnist and author. He blogs at www.bobsbanter.com and can be reached at email@example.com