Saturday, February 20, 2010

Automobile University

Photo by Frank Kendralla

Nearly 25 years ago, I listened to a speech by Zig Ziglar and he discussed the concept of Auto University. He proposed that if we listen to books and other educational audio items as we commute, the average commuter would gain the equivalent knowledge of multiple earned degrees throughout their career. I took his advice and whenever I am traveling (by car, plane, or foot) I am listening to something educational.

During the past two plus decades, I have listened to the dictionary on tape (before the CD and MP3 players), autobiographies, biographies, fiction, fiction based on historical truth, and everything in between. I lost count of the number of books I listened to ranging from best sellers by Zig Ziglar to Tom Peters to Dave Ramsey. There is no doubt I listened to hundreds of books over the years obtaining the equivalent of multiple earned degrees. I obtain my listening material from many different sources. If you are near a library, you can borrow books on CD to play in your vehicle. I purchase books from and iTunes. Podcast are one of my favorite methods to learn a subject.

If you enjoy talk radio, find a Podcast about a subject you enjoy and listen to it. Most Podcasts are free and without commercials. However, some do have sponsors but the ads are not obtrusive and usually educational. Rather than the typical commercials played during AM or FM radiobroadcasts.

I listen to many different Podcasts, ranging from Photography to Dave Ramsey (debt free living) to Dan Miller (life and work coach), to inspirational.

Prior to returning to school to obtain an earned graduate and post graduate degree, I listened to at least one hundred books and talks on the subjects I was studying. There is no doubt that this method of study and learning assisted me in finishing my masters and doctorate degree.

If you spend any amount of time commuting, running, walking, etc., consider adding audio books/Podcast to your mix of audio material.

Recently, I finished listening to the book “Outstanding” by John Miller. It is the third book I finished by him. My favorite and in the top ten on my list of recommended books is QBQ (Question behind the Question). I have both the audio and written form of the book QBQ. QBQ is one of the first books I always recommend to anyone who comes to me for advice about building a successful career.

Outstanding adds to John Miller’s previous books and builds upon the importance of customer service. Out of a rating of five, I give it a 3.5 and this is based upon the 5+ that I give to QBQ. It is a very good book but my first recommendation goes to QBQ.


Ginnie Geater said...

What else is in your top 10??!!

Unknown said...

Ginnie, thanks for the idea. I posted a reading list today. :-D