Big Things Can Start Small

It's easy, when making plans for goals, to get caught up in the lofty. Well, let me be more specific...lofty goals are fine. It's just been my experience that the lofty goals are reached in incremental small steps. By breaking it down, important things can be achieved.

So I eagerly turned to Bill Cummings' new book, "Starting Small and Making It Big". Most people in the greater Boston area are familiar with the many real estate holdings that fall under Cummings Properties. Bill's companies have come to define the real estate landscape in Boston. Working at Endicott College, we are near one of Bill's flagship properties, the Cummings Center which is located in Beverly, MA. Bill had the idea of turning a long-shuttered shoe factory on a massive parcel of land into a multi-use commercial property. Fast forward to today and the Cummings Center speaks loudly to his persistence, well-articulated vision and ability to execute.

Many know that Bill and his wife Joyce are now billionaires who have taken the Giving Pledge begun by Warren Buffet and Bill and Melinda Gates. That is no doubt a lofty goal. Yet when it was announced in the local Boston papers about their intended philanthropy, many very close to Bill and Joyce, while knowing that they were well off, didn't know exactly how well off they were...certainly they didn't know that Bill and Joyce were billionaires.

In reading Bill's book, his story is like many others. He came from a humble home as did Joyce. Their families did not harken back to the Mayflower but, relatively speaking, had recent roots in America. Bill began work at a young age and discovered he had an entrepreneurial flair. Then, little by little, through grit and determination and quite a bit of that "vision thing", he began to have more and more business success. Bill is quick to admit that Joyce was a big part of supporting his ability to go after that business success. Did they both know that they would end up as billionaires? No. However, through the grit of always moving forward, in incremental steps, that goal was reached.

I love reading business books; in particular, I find leadership books fascinating. Some are excellent but many are written in a fashion that make leadership seem more surreal than real. Bill's book falls into the excellent category. His narrative isn't a slick Silicon Valley story; nor is it a story of someone born into a family with wealth and prestige. It is a story of Everyman and Everywoman. And that is most inspiring of all.

So what small step can you take right now, in this moment, toward your own lofty goal?

If you are interested, here is a link to learn more:

(this review is provided purely for educational purposes and no compensation was received by the author).