Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day: 5 Lessons Entrepreneurs Can Learn From The Great Man

Jan 21, 14

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

This quote has shone through decades and defines an American who chose to go a different path – a path that provided hope and succor to millions of Americans. We are talking about Martin Luther King.

At AWSUSA, we celebrate Martin Luther King Day by listing out the qualities that defined this great man. These qualities can help drive entrepreneurs to their goals with ease.

1.       Leadership: Martin Luther King Jr. was the only one who stood up and took responsibility when nobody else was willing to. He raised several questions and found answers to them as well – providing leadership and guidance to millions.

As an entrepreneur, you will have to take decisions that can positively change your business and the careers of people who work for you. Ask questions at the right time and create long-term plans that can script success for your business.

2.       Reliability: Followers of Martin Luther King Jr. followed his word to the T. They placed immense trust on him and his message to end discrimination/segregation.

Develop a trustworthy character that will endear yourself to employees, customers and everybody else you deal with. Model yourself into a leader with impeccable values that are worthy to be emulated.

3.       Patience: Martin Luther King Jr. spent years getting his message out there. Numerous demonstrations and marches later, his voice was heard by authorities.

As an entrepreneur, you should not aim for instant success. Instead, focus on a slow and steady path that will put you on the road to long-term business success. Of course, there will be hurdles all the way. Face them head on with determination and grit.

4.       Practice: On August 28, 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “I Have a Dream’ to 250,000 supporters from the Lincoln Memorial. He didn’t use any notes – his speech seemed like it was delivered without rehearsal or planning.

In reality, he spent years practicing and devising the perfect speech. How long do you practice before giving a speech? Here is a better question – how many times do you think over before taking crucial decisions?

5.       Repetitiveness: King was known for repeating key messages from his “I have a dream” speech on several occasions. This helped him drive his message out to the audience in a more precise manner. Do you have a message you would want to highlight among your audience in a constant manner? How well are you highlighting it without sounding repetitive?

Each time the audience heard King’s “I have a dream” speech, they were stirred. Are you able to have an emotional connect with your audience on oft-repeated messages?

We, at AWSUSA, hope that 2014 is the year your business meets with greater success. What better way than to incorporate valuable insights from Martin Luther King Jr.’s life? Wish you all the best for 2014!

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