week, we ended with the question: Is the sum of the parts
really the same as the whole? Usually after Christmas we
know that many a toy has been assembled with parts left
over, and many a piece of do-it-yourself furniture has been
put to use, with bolts and washers still in the sealed plastic.
So what good does it bring us if we experience a strong
growth performance and a real domestic output that
has expanded by 8.5 per cent, according to the Economic
Bulletin of the Central Bank?
The answer resides in whether you think the average figures
for the population have any effect on the experience of
those in the two tails of the classic normal distribution
bell curve, ie those demonstrating exceptional performance
or minority trends.
Those in the tail of the curve, dwell in that locale either
because they do precious little to better themselves individually,
or because they master individualistic work to better themselves.
Those who work harder on themselves move to on achieve unbridled
success. It is the epitome of self-realisation. And it is
The point is that regardless of the national statistics
on growth and personal wages, we have to stop laying blame
on others or on things. We cannot blame the Carnival because
we failed to render productive work for our employers on
Ash Wednesday. It is foolhardy to blame the traffic congestion,
the weather, or even the Government.
And while we have to know and understand whats gong
down around us, we must break free of the shackle that deceives
us into believing that somebody else will take care of us.
To work harder on oneself is to do the difficult things
that others refuse to do. Surprisingly the difficult things
are really only systematic, routine steps that must be done
Have you ever worked out what it costs to bounce the ignition
in your motor vehicle each day that you drive to work?
Do you know what it costs to make a work related phone call
from your cellphone? If you are an entrepreneur, you would
know these things, because the success of your business
translates into your ability to pay. You have to pay the
costs of that motorcar, and the phone, plus all bills, with
money left over to reinvest in your business, or to retain
If you get paid $200 per day, your tax liability may leave
you with $175 to pay for goods and services. Your daily
expenses cannot exceed $175. If it costs you $75 per day
to start your car and commute to and from work and your
lunch costs $25, then you are left with $75 to pay for housing,
clothing and utilities and contribute to your savings.
So the questions abound: is the economy growing at your
individual expense? Does it cost less for public transportation?
And how does growth in the economy filter down to those
in the middle of the bell curve? The concept of separating
the dictates of the job, the limits of its pay, and the
norms for the economy from the individual himself is an
In a packed Ballroom at the Atlanta Hilton, in 1997, I remember
famed motivational speaker Jim Rohn saying, You can
climb the ladder of success as high as you wish, but you
have to work harder on yourself than you do on your job.