The Education of Millionaires – Michael Ellsberg

The Myth: If you get into a good college, study hard, and graduate with excellent grades, you will be pretty much set for a successful career.

The Reality: The biggest thing you won’t learn in college is how to succeed professionally. Some of the smartest, most successful people in the country didn’t finish college. None of them learned their most critical skills in an institution of higher education. And like them, most of what you’ll need to learn to be successful you’ll have to learn on your own, outside of school.

Michael Ellsberg set out to fill in the gaps by interviewing a wide range of millionaires and billionaires who don’t have college degrees, including fashion magnate Russell Simmons, Facebook cofounder Dustin Moskovitz and founding president Sean Parker, WordPress creator Matt Mullenweg, and Pink Floyd songwriter and lead guitarist David Gilmour. Among the fascinating things he learned:

  • How fashion designer Marc Ecko started earning $1,000 a week in high school with his own clothing business and later grew it into an empire.
  • How billionaire Phillip Ruffin went from lowly department store clerk with no college degree to owner of Treasure Island on the Vegas Strip.
  • How John Paul DeJoria went from homelessness to billionaire as the founder of John Paul Mitchell Systems hair care products.

This book is your guide to developing practical success skills in the real world. Even if you’ve already gone through college, the most important skills weren’t on the curriculum–how to find great mentors, build a world-class network, learn real-world marketing and sales, make your work meaningful (and your meaning work), build the brand of you, master the art of bootstrapping, and more.

Learning the skills in this book well is a necessary addition to any education, whether you’re a high school dropout or a graduate of Harvard Law School. 

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