Welcome UnClass! There’ll be no grades. You will do work. You’ll show up on time. We’ll answer the following questions–asked by you, “Why didn’t we get to learn these things in school?”
In regular class, you learn what you “need to learn.” If you’re very lucky, there’ll be enough time left over to do a little something extra. There’s a lot of pressure in education these days, coming from all directions. But more and more you tell me you feel rushed. You feel there’s things we’re leaving out to get through “the things we need to get through.” You feel you could learn more. Let’s learn more. First, you have to ask yourself the following question. What’s school for? World famous author, entrepreneur, and marketing genius Seth Godin says that best. If, after you’ve invested a moment learning the history of the number two pencil and factory education, we can agree that’s not what school is for, let’s get some idea about what real learning is, and what it can do for you…Because that’s what UnClass is all about!
Real learning applies to your life. You must be able to take what you’ve learned and find a creative use for it, connect it to things, and make it work for you. No one cares if you can beat them in trivial pursuit. They care if you can function in today’s tough and competitive workplace. To do that, you must be constantly able to adapt and provide innovative solutions.
Real learning gives you the skills you need for success. More and more, the world is changing. The economy is different, we live at a faster pace, technology is standard, and people don’t work the same types of jobs as their parents and grandparents. My grandparents worked one job, were loyal to The Company and retired with a watch and a picnic. After a generation, a shift occurred. My parents had mid-life career changes, working two jobs, and now worry about things like medical insurance. Another generational shift occurred. I entered the workforce. Things were different again. Jobs were being outsourced, and “corporate loyalty” disappeared. No job is secure. You must add value to any position you take, but you must also think “What’s in it for me?” honing and crafting your skills until eventually you call the shots. That’s the goal: you want to call the shots! The perfect education gives you the skills to do just that–to be flexible, adapt, innovate, and create your own path. In no generation is this more important than yours!
Real learning invokes your deepest interest. If you’re going to have to create your own path in life, or at least remain flexible enough to innovate your way out of a tough spot, you should be learning things you are passionate about. In that way, you will continue to learn, and you will stay ahead of your competition. Learning is a habit–it never stops.
Real learning makes you want to learn more. This UnClass is proof. What newly-graduated senior in his or her right mind wants–more school. You. That’s who.
Real learning frees your mind. Too often, school tells you what you should learn. Sometimes these suggestions are important–you need these skills to survive. Some of us, who have fought a couple rounds with life, can attest to that. We’re just trying to save you the trouble. But you should never be limited to learning only certain things. Learn everything–related, unrelated, on the fringes–it all comes together in the end.
That’s why we’re here…
That’s the objective of UnClass. You’ve asked questions about life, success, business, and what successful people do to create that success. You’ve heard me joke that I’m the dumbest one of all my friends…not because I’m dumb, because they’re smart, successful, and innovative. You become a success by studying success. That will be our approach.
Success only comes with hard work, failure, and the dedication to get back up again and move forward, no matter how many times you fall down. You will see that it is a system, attainable by anyone willing to do the work…and it will surprise you.
To get the most out of UnClass you should:
- Read the blog posts, especially the links. If I give you a book, read that, too. Find other books and posts on your own. Read them. Contribute to our list.
- Research successful people in and out of your field. Read their books, bios, and study their success.
- Attend the group Google hangouts.
- Show up for the in-person meetup(s). Don’t worry, I’m buying the coffee or lunch. It may be the only time in life you get a free lunch. Enjoy.
- Engage with the group. Talk, offer ideas, work on each other’s projects.
- Do some networking, research successful people who spark your interest. Tweet them, contact them, send them an email. Build your connections.
- Take some chances. Risk is hard for everyone. If you see an opportunity, present it, then take it.
Let’s get it started…