Personal efficiency is what really matters if you want to become successful in today’s society. Personal efficiency is about your ability to organize your day according to your personality traits and your goals. Personal efficiency is also a matter of knowing your personal traits and how to develop them.
Today we will take a closer look at another really interesting book on the subject of personal development. Although it is written almost 100 years ago, it’s one of the best books I’ve read on the subject. Especially as there are some really useful and practical tips on self-evaluation in this book.
Most people are familiar with Forbes Magazine and it’s yearly compilation of the world’s richest persons. The founder of this magazine is, however, unknown to most of us living today.
Bertie Charles Forbes (1880 –1954) was a Scottish-born American financial journalist and author who worked as a reporter and editorial writer with a local newspaper until 1901 when he moved to Johannesburg, South Africa. There where he worked on the Rand Daily Mail until he immigrated to New York City in the United States in 1904 where he was employed as a writer and financial editor at the Journal of Commerce before joining the Hearst chain of newspapers as a syndicated columnist in 1911. He left Hearst after two years to become the business and financial editor at the New York American where he remained until 1916.
He founded Forbes magazine in 1917 and remained editor-in-chief until his death in New York City in 1954, though assisted in his later years by Bruce Charles Forbes (1916–1964) and Malcolm Stevenson Forbes (1919–1990), his two eldest sons.
B.C. Forbes authored several books, mostly on subjects like personal development and inspiration. Of these the following books can be read for free online:
- Finance, Business and the Business of Life (1915)
- Men Who Are Making America (1917)
- Keys to Success-Personal Efficiency (1919)
- Forbes Epigrams (1922)
Of these books, I choose to focus on Keys to Success – Personal Efficiency. According to B.C. Forbes, the first step toward efficiency is the personal check-up.
On the chart below you find a blank in which the various Keys to Success are listed in the first column. In the spaces opposite you should then check each quality by a cross in the proper column, according to your own strengths and weaknesses.
To quote Forbes, you should proceed as follows when completing the schedule:
In the first column mark the qualities you know you are strong in, and which you exercise now regularly in your business. In the second column check with a cross the qualities you think you have in good natural development but which you do not have an opportunity to use at present in business. In the third column check with a cross the qualities about which you do not feel at all sure.
Beyond the double line we will check the qualities in which we believe we are particularly weak. In the first column check the qualities in which you feel particularly weak and which you require in your present or prospective business. In the second column beyond the double line
check the qualities in which you think you are weak but which are not important in your present or prospective business.
In the third column check the qualities which you suspect may be weak but about which you are uncertain.
The columns beyond the triple line you should use after you have been over this course by way of checking up the results — in the first column the qualities you have assured yourself you are all right in or in which you have attained satisfactory improvement, in the second column the qualities on which you are still working for improvement, and in the third column the qualities for which you have found compensations. Every personal quality should be accounted for under one of these three heads.
Here is the same chart as it is presented in the book:
It may not be that easy to know exactly what is meant by the personal qualities that Forbes uses in the table. Therefore, I suggest that you read about the personal features in the book, as the importance of them are explained in detail in a separate section.
It is really important that we occasionally take the time to evaluate ourselves. Unfortunately, there are not too many good examples on how to do this. Not even in today’s society with an abundance of information.