The Power of One
by Bryce Courtenay
This book review is a little different. During my journeys in July to Brisbane and Tin Can Bay, I was listening to this (audio) book and I realised that there were numerous business lessons to be learned from Bryce Courtney’s’ story.
My favourite quote from the book is ‘first with the head and then with the heart.’
And here are just some of the valuable business lessons that you may be able to adopt in your journey:
- ‘It’s good to be a little frightened. It’s good to respect your opponent. It keeps you sharp.’
- ‘Now my (Hymie) theory is that to beat any system you have to know it intimately. Rebellion is senseless and being pointedly different only leads to persecution.’
- ‘This time we gambled and won. Next time you fight we’re going to know the form. We’re going to know everything it is possible to know about your opponent. Every time he scratches his bum we’re going to analyse why. The making of money should never be left to chance.’
- ‘It’s time to get out, Peekay. There are two important rules of business, knowing when to get in and when to get out. Of the two, knowing when to get out is the most important. We’ve got bigger fish to fry.’
- ‘… business is simply a matter of opportunity and money. If you’ve got capital, sure as tomorrow is Tuesday, an opportunity will come along. We’ve built up a considerable bank over the first two years, fifty percent of everything we made went into our capital which was earning interest’
- ‘Look, Hymie, it meets every criterion we’ve established for a business. There is a known need for our services. The risk factor is small and easy to control, our creditors can hardly default can they? We don’t have to borrow capital and the profits are reasonable and regular.’
- ‘Geel Piet taught me to anticipate the problems likely to occur in any situation and to review the answers to them long before disaster struck. His mind was a network of emergency plans.’
- Over all this lay Hoppie’s dictum: ‘First with the head and then with the heart’. Winning was something you worked at intellectually, emotion clouds the mind and is its natural enemy.