To be the person you want to be, act like the person you want to be.
There are 3 ways to go about it.
You can assume how this person that you aspire to be like acts and follow suit.
The 2nd approach is to research the person. You can read books and watch interviews.
The 3rd approach is to get close to this person and then learn directly from her. This approach is superior to the other 2 approaches because it gives you unfiltered exposure, and cuts the time it takes to learn from this person.
This is how Richard Branson, Warren Buffet, Swami Vivekananda, Bill Gates, Oprah, and famed designer Yves Saint Laurent, grew to amazing heights in life.
They all had life long mentors who influenced their thoughts and actions and somewhat shaped who they came to be.
Richard Branson had Sir Freddie Laker. This is what Branson wrote about him in The Sun:
“It’s always good to have a helping hand at the start. I wouldn’t have got anywhere in the airline industry without the mentorship of Sir Freddie Laker.”
Warren Buffet learned the value investing principle from Benjamin Graham. This formed the core of his investment philosophy.
Swami Vivekananda found his spiritual guide in Ramakrishna Paramhansa.
Bill Gates learns from Warren Buffet though this works both ways.
Oprah was influenced by Maya Angelou. Oprah once said that one of the best lessons she learned from Angelou was:
“When you learn, teach; when you get, give.”
Yves Saint Laurent made Prêt-à-Porter (factory-made) clothing fashionable. But he learned what he knew about fashion from the master of haute couture who was none other than his mentor Christian Dior. Dior hired Saint Laurent when he was only 18 years old. Through his sincerity and hard work, Saint Laurent won the trust of Dior and became the lead designer at 21, shortly after Dior’s death.
How To Find Your Mentor
Getting a job seems to be the best way to do it, early in your career.
That’s how Saint Laurent did it.
Another way to do it is to get your role model to teach you.
After being rejected by Harvard Business School, Buffett enrolled at Columbia Business School when he learned that Benjamin Graham taught there.
The basic ideas of investing are to look at stocks as business, use the market’s fluctuations to your advantage, and seek a margin of safety. That’s what Ben Graham taught us. A hundred years from now they will still be the cornerstones of investing.Warren Buffett
If you are young and looking to get into a CEO role. Then try finding work as an EA (executive assistant) with the person you want to be like.
If you don’t have any specific person in mind then learn about the leading names who are working in that role and then approach the one you like and feel a connection with. For example, if you want to be a Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) then find the CMOs you admire and reach out early to establish contact. Then explore the opportunities to work with them.
Another approach is to engage with the person professionally. Pay them to be your coach, to advise and guide you.
Whichever approach you take, but working closely with the person you want to be like, will likely help you grow 10 times than you would if you try to do it on your own.