Tuesday, June 21, 2005

"There is No Knowledge That is Not Power."

Donald Trump Posted by Hello

The quote from Emerson in the title of this post comes courtesy of Donald J. Trump. Yep, that Donald Trump. I signed on to the Trump University Inside Trump Tower Newsletter a few weeks ago. It's a good read. In the latest issue, Mr. Trump's article, "Use Knowledge to Your Advantage," offers several engaging vignettes illustrating how knowledge has worked to his advantage.

When I was waiting to buy 40 Wall Street (home of Trump University), it was advantageous for me to know a lot about the building and the troubles the owners were having with it. I spent time studying the building and the area, and kept informed about the latest developments. When the opportunity finally came to purchase it, I was ready and knew what I was getting into. The tallest building in lower Manhattan, 40 Wall Street is a 1.3 million square foot landmark. I bought it for $1 million. You can imagine what it’s worth now, considering it’s hard to find a one-bedroom apartment for under $1 million these days. When I say knowledge is power, I mean it. Use it to your advantage.

Another example is how I develop golf courses. I get the best experts in the world, and I ask them literally hundreds of questions. I go over every detail, every tree, every hole, every idea with them. Fortunately they love what they do, so they don’t find this tedious. By the time construction is underway, I know everything that’s being done and can keep an informed eye on the progress. There is no reason not to be thorough, whether you are the golf course architect or the developer. Teamwork really works when both sides put their knowledge together and aim for the best. Because of this approach, my golf courses are spectacular.

The lesson for students, whether taking courses at Trump University or elsewhere, is to make learning your priority. Don't let anything get in the way of learning. And remember, the details are important. I get the feeling that Donald Trump could do a pretty good job of designing a golf course without the experts, just because he pays attention to the details. He credits this idea from Kipling for his success:

Rudyard Kipling wrote something I read in college and have never forgotten: “I keep six honest serving men, they taught me all I knew—their names are What and Why and When—and How and Where and Who.” Finding the answers to those questions will ensure that your information is comprehensive and correct. There’s really no such thing as knowing too much about what you’re doing.

The best and the brightest people I've ever met sure fit the mold expressed in the previous sentence: There's no such thing as knowing too much about what you're doing. Especially when what you're doing involves the lives or livelihoods of people.



At 4:27 PM, Blogger Christina said...

I think that Donald Trump's University would be successful because so far he is successful in all of his business. He is a very smart man and many people will learn a lot from him.

At 6:22 PM, Blogger ElaineH said...

I agree with you Dr. Ayers on making learning your priority and not letting anything get in the way of learning. I think Trump's University will become very sucessful as he has over the years.

At 12:55 PM, Blogger Melissa said...

Kipling had it right on. That piece of advice should be shared with everyone. Great blog!

At 3:01 AM, Blogger Ronald M. Ayers said...

The Donald is always looking for some new challenge. Gotta like that. Plus all the attention to detail. He must be an anal retentive, who gets upset if his wife does not put the cap back on the tube of toothpaste.

At 12:03 PM, Anonymous Mohammad said...

I definately agree in terms of going to school to become successful in the long run. My parents tell me the same thing all the time, to not allow any distractions come in the way of my studies. A lot of people could learn from Donald as well as Dr. Ronald Ayers.

At 2:32 PM, Blogger Sara Humphrey said...

DOnald Trump is a man who knows what it is he wants and what he has to do get it. I think we all should adopt this way of thinking in pursuing our goals. I actually bought my boyfriend his latest book because he is really into business...he the vice president of Sagebrush Logistics. He just started it. It has only been up for about 6 months and is based out of Dallas. He comes from a long line of business. So, I felt compelled to buy him this book he wanted for a peice of advice from who is known as the most sucessful people in the world. Knowledge is power.

At 1:52 PM, Blogger Christian Guajardo said...

Any knowledge is good knowledge...I totally agree; for any and every subject. For better experiences, or for worse, you really do learn something new everyday.


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