10 LIFE LESSONS FROM THE RICHEST MAN IN MODERN HISTORY
The road to happiness lies in two simple principles: find what it is that interests you and that you can do well, and when you find it put your whole soul into it – every bit of energy and ambition and natural ability you have – John D. Rockefeller
John D. Rockefeller once said, “Long before I was eighteen years old, people didn’t call me John, but Mr. Rockefeller!”. Known for his wealth and his good nature —above everything, Mr. Rockefeller was one of the well-dressed men in his time. Many entrepreneurs consider fashion and clothing less important, but not Mr. Rockefeller. He was always neatly dressed in perfectly tailored black or dark gray suits, white shirts, simple black tie and nicely polished shoes. And he was often seen wearing gloves, silk hat, and carrying an umbrella. He was a perfect gentleman.
He was the greatest businessman to ever live and widely considered the wealthiest person in modern history, as the wealthy industrialist would be worth a whopping $340 billion (with a capital B!) today.
The American oil industry business magnate and philanthropist was born on July 8, 1839, in Richford, New York. In September of 1855, at the age of 16, he got a job as an assistant bookkeeper with Hewitt & Tuttle, commission merchants, and wholesale produce shippers. He impressed his employers with his seriousness and diligence. At 19, Mr. Rockefeller who thrived at his job, went into business for himself, forming a partnership with a neighbor, Maurice Clark.
At the age of 23, his economic habits allowed him to jump at the chance to enter the oil business when the “black gold” was discovered in Pennsylvania. He later founded the Standard Oil Company in 1870, at the age of 31 and was the first person in history to reach a personal net worth of $1 billion.
He is seen as one of the most respected philanthropists in history and many refer to him as “The most important man in the world“. Throughout his successful business career, Mr. Rockefeller was very generous with his money. In total, he gave away more than $530 million to various causes. Mr. Rockefeller, who wanted to live until July 9, 1939 (i.e. 100 years old) died on May 23, 1937, at the age of 97.
During his lifetime, John D. Rockefeller offered some wisdom for the business titans of the future. Here are 10 Life Lessons, from his New York Times obituary:
1. Do all the good you can.
2. Do not grow old before your time. Maintain an interest in life and all living things.
3. A little rest now and then helps a man to accomplish more.
4. Do not be afraid to work.
5. If you make a mistake, remember that it is human to err. Try again and try harder.
6. I believe it is a duty for a man to get all the money he honestly can and to give all he can.
7. Live within your means. One of the swiftest toboggans I know of is for a young man just starting in life to get into debt.
8. There is no feeling in this world to be compared with self-reliance — do not sacrifice that to anything else.
9. A clear conscience is worth more and is a greater comfort than is a great fortune gathered by dishonorable methods.
10. Sons of wealthy parents have not the ghost of a chance compared with boys who came from the country with the determination to do something in this world.
John D. Rockefeller Quotes
1. Don’t be afraid to give up the good to go for the great.
2. If you want to succeed you should strike out on new paths, rather than travel the worn paths of accepted success.
3. I believe that every right implies a responsibility; every opportunity, an obligation; every possession, a duty.
4. Good management consists in showing average people how to do the work of superior people.
5. I do not think that there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature.
6. If your only goal is to become rich, you will never achieve it.
7. I believe in the dignity of labor, whether with head or hand; that the world owes no man a living but that it owes every man an opportunity to make a living.
8. I always tried to turn every disaster into an opportunity.
9. Charity is injurious unless it helps the recipient to become independent of it.
10. I would rather earn 1% off a 100 people’s efforts than 100% of my own efforts.
There is one main reason why a lot of people find themselves not living the life they want – they lack inspiration & motivation to follow their dreams like everyone should! And it’s important for us to be continuously inspired every day of our lives.
So today I hope I’ve been able to give you a bit of that – some inspiration! Now go forth and achieve success in your life and business. Do Well, Live Well and Dress Really Well. Be Classy!
Yours in Style,
Kobi O. Mbagwu (Mr. Kobi)
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