From Church Sweeper to A Legend and A Millionaire

A church in London had rules that it would not employ anyone, without formal high school education. The old pastor was benign and not a stickler of rules. He allowed Alfred Dunhill (who lacked formal education) as the caretaker to clean the pews, sweep the floor and keep the podium spick and span.

Dunhill had put off taking his high school examination till it became too late.  Once the old pastor retired, he was replaced by a younger person who followed the rule book.  As he came to know about the caretaker’s education, he issued a notice to him that either he should get a high school certificate in six months or he should resign.

Dunhill knew that you could not teach an old dog new tricks and that he had no option but to resign.  He started out his afternoon stroll in deep thought and got into Bond Street. Suddenly, he felt an urge to smoke. He could not find a single tobacco shop on the entire street.  He walked further down into a side street where he could purchase his cigarette.  He came back to the busy Bond Street. He realized that a small cigarette shop in the street would be a sound business proposition.

He resigned at the church and started a small shop on Bond Street which prospered way beyond his expectations.  He noticed that many of his customers were coming from the other side of the street. He started another shop on that side of Bond Street. The two shops multiplied to four and then sixteen In three years,

Alfred Dunhill Co. was a leading tobacconist in England. He started machine-rolling cigarettes and introduced his own brand of Dunhill cigarettes. In five years, he was a millionaire many times over. To ensure a consistent supply of tobacco, he entered into an annual purchase agreement with a couple of American tobacco farmers and went across to America to meet them.

It was a big boost for the American tobacco farmers and the contract signing ceremony was converted into a media circus, with a Senator and Governor participating. When the contracts were actually signed, Dunhill affixed his thumb impression because he had not learnt to sign his name. The Governor was impressed and said, “Well Sir! This is awesome. Even without a formal education you have achieved so much. Just imagine what would you have done if you had a formal education!”

Dunhill’s characteristic often repeated reply was, “If I knew how to read and write, I would still be sweeping the church!”

The Ten Steps to Success

1. Self-Belief: Success is begins in the mind. One has to be a believer, first, if one wishes to be an achiever. Never under-estimate yourself. You have no idea how often can you surprise yourself. So to begin with, let's get in the belief, "I Can."

2. Clarity of Vision: There is no point running around without knowing where one wants to reach. you must get your job cut out. Greatest achievers in the world have been visionaries. Know exactly what you are best at and give it your best shot.

3. Setting the Right Goals: The goals should be realistic .The goals should be achievable ,and yet challenging enough - neither too easy nor too difficult -something in the middle.

4. Be focused: If the sun's rays are focused on a piece of paper with a lens, the intensity of the concentrated energy burns the paper. Focus on your objective will enhance the intensity of the effects of your efforts.

5. No Short Cuts to Success: There are no short cuts to success. Divide your overall goals into smaller targets. Divide your monthly plans into weekly and weekly plans into daily plans and see how simple can things be.

6. Take Risks: Without any risk no progress is possible. Life comes to a stable standstill. People who take chances are the people who get ahead in life. The only way to reduce risk is to take risks.

7. Take the Initiative: People who take the initiative make the most of their lives. Proactive people do not wait for success to happen; rather they make it happen. As they say, 'JUST DO IT'. 

8. Never Hesitate to Struggle: No one has ever climbed a mountain just by looking at it. Struggle, hard struggle, is a key to success.

9. Own Responsibility: Failure to hit the bull's eye is never the fault of the target. People, who own complete responsibility of their lives, are the people who make the most of it.

10. Never Give Up: Many people who failed in life, where those who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up. Success demands extra-ordinary amount of perseverance. Never, never, give up.