Read My Book

CeCe and I were recently visiting Oxford, MS, to enjoy some Ole Miss baseball and some family time with my parents, Mom and Pop Joe, as well as three of our grandchildren. For me, it doesn’t get much better than watching the Rebels play combined with family time, so I certainly enjoyed the weekend.

We had just pounded Florida in the Friday night game so I was particularly excited to be with my family early the next morning. Before the Saturday games, we met up with my son Brandon, his wife Margie, Davis, our oldest grandson, Dabs, who you may have read my blog on her happy birthday card, and Sullivant (Sully) who is our youngest grandchild. 

CeCe is not known to rise early enough to enjoy this family ritual. (That’s going to cost me and I suspect I will be told it is not really relevant.) As we sat in our booth at our favorite breakfast spot, Big Bad Breakfast (highly recommend) waiting for our order to be served, Sully, who is about 23 months, got a little rowdy. 

He always seems to have a lot of energy so Margie reached into her big bag of goodies and pulled out a book. Sully was sitting next to me and I heard “Pops, Pops…read my book.” Now Sully is not known for putting sentences together, so that got praise from everyone. I then began reading Things to Learn over and over until those cheese grits showed up. Eventually, those grits showed up everywhere, including all over me by the time Sully finished feeding himself.
What a wonderful memory. As I reflected on Sully’s request, “Pops, read my book,” his passion for learning and reading left such an impression on my mind.

How can we stimulate more passion for learning and reading? It is evident today that we are faced with an ever growing learning curve to remain relevant. What are some ideas to spark more reading and constant learning? We know in our hearts that we must consume more information and practice new skills while applying our new knowledge.

For some of us, maybe it’s a little easier because we love to read. Our challenge might be to have the discipline to make sure we are not always reading our favorite books but instead, books that challenges us to #beEvenBetter. Small book clubs have been very popular in our firm as teams have used these to read a book that might be relevant for them. Podcasts and reading apps provide another great means to learn as we do other things—like drive! Quick video clips on complex technical subjects also work well.

It’s really not important how or when we learn more, but it is important that it becomes our focus and part of our daily routine. It’s important that we have an urgency to continually learn. Let's follow Sully’s passionate lead, “read my book.”

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Topics: Life-Long Learning, Leadership

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