Last week we were able to Skype with Donna Ladd, co-founder of the Jackson Free Press. Through listening to both her life story and experiences, I was able to take away many valuable lessons that I know I keep with me throughout my own career.
One point that Donna made was if your reason for wanting to become an entrepreneur is that you want to be your own boss, you need to think of another reason. I’ve realized that many people want to work for themselves, but it takes more determination and dedication than earning a paycheck from someone else. Although many people in my generation are determined to make big bucks off of an idea that they have yet to come up with, the reality is that even if they do have an amazing idea, they need the work ethic to support it.
Another point that Donna made was that you have to want to learn. Many people assume that the only time that you learn is in college. This isn’t true. The most successful people are the ones who are curious and want to continue to learn. She stressed that books are an amazing tool to perfect any craft. You can learn so much from reading just one book that the next person isn’t willing to read.
The final takeaway that I got from Donna was that you have to choose something you’re passionate about and become the best at it. She talked about how being the best at anything will open doors that someone who is mediocre would never get a chance at.
It’s interesting how she, like many of my professors said that you just have to get your foot in the door. Even if that means that you’re not immediately doing the exact job that you were hoping for. The people you know and your work ethic and ability to learn will make you a valuable employee to anyone.