I’ve just seen two fantastic examples of highly successful businessmen do some complex mental maths at the speed of light. Is this the ability that separates the multi millionaires from the rest of us?
I have talked before about the importance of knowing our numbers but these two gentlemen demonstrated just how important mental arithmetic is. The ability to work out percentages, profit margins, break even points, market share etc. in an instant can give an entrepreneur real competitive advantage.
When I am running start your own business courses participants usually groan when I introduce numbers. It’s the area where most have the least confidence. Most need calculators for even simple sums. Yesterday I bought a round of three drinks, the barmaid had to key each item into the till before she could tell me what I owed.The last time I went to the fish and chip shop the assistant was surprised that I had the right money sorted before he had rung the order into the till. I’m no mathematical genius but it wasn’t a complicated sum.
I know we have changed the way we teach maths in the UK in recent years, I hope that the result will be a generation that is confident and competent with numbers and that is less dependent on the calculator. Ultimately I hope it will lead to more successful entrepreneurs in the future.