What Makes The Great Great

What Makes The Great Great?
I have just finished re-reading one of my favorite self-help books of all time, What
Makes the Great Great — Strategies for Extraordinary Achievement. by Dennis
Kimbro, PhD. I think this is one of the absolute best books I’ve ever read on what
it takes to be successful in business and life. Here are a few of the most powerful
ideas I took away from his book:
The Principles of Extraordinary Achievement
People who achieve great things usually hold fast to nine principles:
1. Deeply held spiritual beliefs. We’re not talking about not religion per se but a
profound feeling of connectedness to the universe and a reverence for the
awesomeness of life.
2. The “I can” credo. The most successful people think like winners! An “I can”
attitude forms the foundation of their approach to all things in life.
3. Vision. Successful people have a guiding vision, a sense of focus. They have
a clear idea of what they want to have, do, be, and accomplish.
4. Passion. These people have a burning desire to accomplish their goals, to
make a difference and reach for greatness.
5. Courage. Men and women of courage are willing to take risks, to accept
challenges. They realize that personal excellence is cluttered with obstacles and
do not worry about failure.
6. Character. The successful are always open and honest in all dealings. They
understand that integrity is the basis of trust and character is the one quality
that cannot be acquired, only earned.
7. Competence. Those who wish to achieve greatness understand that towering
competence in their chosen area of expertise is a prerequisite for success.
8. Self-confidence. This does not mean ego, but rather a strong belief that with
hard work, focus, integrity and ever-growing competence you can and will
9. Discipline. Many people understand what it takes to be successful, but those
who make extraordinary achievements have the discipline to do what it takes to
reach success.
The Questions that Lead to Greatness
If you want to achieve greatness, you should ask yourself four questions, says
Dr. Kimbro:
What you love to do?
What would you do for free?
What comes easily to you but with difficulty to others?
 How do others view your talents and gifts?
As I read these questions, he is really asking what are you exceptionally good at,
that you absolutely love to do and that is highly valuable in the marketplace?
Where the answer to those three questions intersects is where you can build a
highly successful life and career.
Helping Others Helps You
Dr. Kimbro also outlines his Seven Laws of Success. Although all seven are
vitally important, I would like to focus on one that I have used to form my own
personal philosophy of success: The Law of Reciprocity. According to Dr.
Kimbro, the most successful men and women in our society are those who have
helped the greatest number of people to achieve their objectives. They build a
vast reservoir of goodwill and, in turn, will be compensated for having aided so
many others.
I have based my life on this philosophy, believing, as the old quote says, “You
can have anything that you want, if you just help enough other people get what
they want.”
I know that none of this sounds particularly revolutionary, and that it takes a great
deal of thought, preparation and hard work to actually live the things I’ve just
outlined. But the truth is if you work on these issues every single day of your life
and try to do as much of them as possible you will be doing exactly what is
required to achieve the success you desire.
Byline: John Spence has been recognized as one of the top 100 business thought leaders
and as one of the top 500 leadership development experts in the world. He is an
international keynote speaker and management consultant and has written five books on
business and life success. www.johnspence.com