Eric McGehearty is the least likely businessman you'll ever meet -- and yet his barriers were critical stepping stones to success.
This is great advice for our students--and there's an important message here for teachers about finding a way around seemingly insurmountable academic abstacles. Kids need our help to make stepping stones from stumbling blocks.--Lou
"...It wasn’t easy. I didn’t really recognize that I was smart, truly smart, until the end of high school. And it was even later that I realized that even though my dyslexia could be a barrier, the ways I dealt with it became part of the reason for my success.
Barriers or Benefits?
To begin with, I embraced technology at an early age, since I used technology to “read”—and to play. My dad had one of the earliest computers. It had one simple video game, which I loved. He wrote down the DOS commands so that I could play it, and I became one of youngest DOS users around. Since I became tech-savvy early on, I’m extremely comfortable with new technology and quick to adopt it.
I also listen well. Not only am I an avid reader of audio books, but I really listen to people. After a meeting, I often remember key points much better than my colleagues. I don’t have to go back and look at my notes, because I don’t have any. I have to listen and remember.
Dyslexia also helped me become a salesman. In school, I had to sell the teachers on how clever I was, so that they understood I was trying and would cut me some slack if I needed to write something.
I learned to ask for help, too. Since I couldn’t write, I needed to dictate. I had to learn to get what I needed from other people. I think that gave me a big advantage, since that‘s where a lot of other entrepreneurs fall down. They try to do everything themselves. Me? I ask for help when I need it....."