A few years back, a young entrepreneur approached me to discuss his fledgling business.
I was highly impressed by both him and his new company.
I then thought about a recent comment from a 17 year old boy from Branford, CT. He said, “school doesn’t matter. It doesn’t teach you anything you need in the real world. All those guys who start businesses didn’t need to know US history or Spanish.”
The student had a reasonable point about the content taught in school. But, he was off in relation to skill development taught in school.
The young entrepreneur did not have any work experience. His ability to build a company relied on his writing, reading, and math abilities.
In the new world of work, e-mail and other forms of written communication constitute a large percentage of communication. As a new entrepreneur seeking capital, new clients, business partners and so forth, he sent hundreds of e-mails a week, some quite lengthy, in an effort to get the word out about his company. That was why I agreed to meet with him. I was impressed by the quality of his written presentation.
In addition, his understanding of the numbers required to do well in his business was excellent and his general knowledge of business was acquired mostly through reading, since he had no work experience, was outstanding.
Essentially, the three Rs’ – reading, writing and arithmetic – were developed at a high level. That’s why he was successful. So, apparently school does matter.