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lessons

Oprah Winfrey is one the most influential woman in the world. The media boss runs her own TV network, publishes a magazine, hosts inspirational shows, executive produces films, and still finds the time to conduct major philanthropic works around the world.

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Winfrey’s list of accomplishments is so long it can be difficult not to be in awe and admire her ability to continuously realize her goals despite the challenges – you know she’s had her haters along the way.

It’s hard to imagine what her world and ours would be like if she’d simply settled with being just another talk show host. Instead of resting on the success of her 1984 hosting gig. “AM Chicago – which later became nationally syndicated as “The Oprah Winfrey Show” – she kept challenging perceived limits and the realm of possibilities.

From entertainer to entrepreneur, Oprah leveraged her driven personality to grow her brand – and her businesses – into the household name we know today. There may not be another mogul like Oprah in our lifetimes, but we’d be crazy to not use her roadmap to achieve our own personal business success.

Here are 5 lessons from Oprah to help you achieve your own business success today:

Be True to Yourself

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I cannot stress the importance of this enough. From the tender age of three Oprah was captivating her local church with her ability to recite bible verses. She would even ask her dolls and the crows in her yard detailed questions.

You could say that she was born to host her own talk show so if you’re currently working a job that isn’t resonating with your innate passion, consider making a change to see where it takes you.

You Can’t Learn to Walk without Falling

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No one is an overnight success… not even Oprah. It took hard work, dedication, and massive strings of failures to achieve what he has today.

Think of failure as a new perspective, a new lesson, another stepping stone to your ultimate destination and never be afraid to fail. Here’s a tip: Try doing something that you’re sure you can’t do – rock climbing, running a race, making dinner from scratch.

Fail at it. And, then try it again. Only this time do it better and see how you feel about it after.

There’s No Such Thing as Luck

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“I feel that luck is preparation meeting opportunity.” – Oprah Winfrey

In business, you make your own luck. Period. You don’t earn 2.7 billion dollars by thinking that every decision you make is going to be lucky.

Most new entrepreneurs hope for a sudden spike in sales or a rush of traffic to their website, but if you put all of your efforts into hoping instead of doing; you’ll be left discouraged and unprepared to capitalize on the small wins.

Slow It Down

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Running a business is like a marathon with a few brief commercial-like breaks of calm thrown in. There’s always something left to check off on some list or something hanging over you that should have been done last week.

The Queen of Media doesn’t just tell her followers to appreciate the slow moments; she does it herself.  She takes time each day to recognize all the things she is grateful for and to just celebrate her being. It doesn’t take long and those type of short moments can make all the different for you in your business.

You’re In Charge

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There are plenty of people out there who are content to allow life to just happen to them. Don’t be one of those people! You need to take charge and make things happen for yourself.

“I don’t think of myself as a poor deprived ghetto girl who made good. I think of myself as somebody who from an early age knew I was responsible for myself, and I had to make good.”

Oprah knew it wasn’t going to be easy, but went for it anyway. The only person in control of your destiny/business/life is you. There is power in the fact that you get to choose how you run your business and brand. That fact should drive you and inspire you to leverage that power to achieve your own version of success.

-Staff Writer | Not Just A Girl In A Dress

I fell in love with musicals when I was a kid and watched AMC (America’s Movie Classics) all summer. This was AMC, pre-The Walking Dead and every character learned a joyful lesson. A few years later I discovered Broadway and my education continued. If you itching to see a timely show, check out the Tony-award winning musical, ‘Memphis.’  Besides the stellar performances and great music; you’ll be treated to a few lessons about holding on to a job (which might come in handy these days).

Loosely based on the 1950s disc jokey Dewey Phillips, “Memphis” follows the character Huey Calhoun through his career as a white man who loves rock and roll.

Results Make You Indispensable

Radio stations at that time didn’t play music by African-American artists, so when Huey hijacked a station to play an African-American rock song, his prospective employer was ready to throw him out.  Huey’s results saved him.  Teenagers started calling in to request more music from him, and Huey got the job.

Lesson: If you consistently deliver, your boss will want to keep you in the office.

Weaknesses Can Be Overcome

It turns out that Huey can’t read, which makes it hard for him to present scripted commercials on the radio.  He asks a friend to help him read the script for a beer commercial, but he forgets the words.  Forced to improvise, Huey relies on his quick wit to get through the ad, and the beer maker sells every bit of his inventory.

 

Lesson:  Build your skills until they’re strong enough to overcome your weak points.

Persistence is Key

When Huey’s mom destroys the record featuring the voice of Huey’s beloved Felicia, it seems like she’ll never have the chance to hear her music on the radio.  Huey quickly finds a way to make it happen:  he brings in a band and background singers so that Felicia can sing live, and she’s a huge hit!

 

Lesson:  Don’t give up, even when everyone else has lost faith.

Felicia Sings

What have you learned about work from watching musicals?

 

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