Last week in my VIP Group, I offered students a new service- a VVIP Concierge Service. Don’t worry, I’m not going to try and sell you anything. In fact, it’s only available to my VIP students and that course is full.
The Concierge Service is an extra level of help. In a nutshell, I interview students, assess their work and figure out exactly what they need to improve. I then develop a personalised study plan for them based on their individual needs and check in with them throughout their preparation.
Working so closely with students gave me some amazing insights into the reasons why some students succeed and others are doomed. I wrote about this to help my VIP students. I thought I would share it with everyone.
Here’s the post I made in my VIP Facebook Group:
Some important observations from my concierge sessions:
I’ve been working closely with a few of the people that decided to join the concierge service this week and I’ve a few things I want to share with you all.
I’m not trying to sell you anything. The service is completely full. I just want to make you understand these very important lessons.
1. Improvement is BORING
There’s no way to avoid this fact. The vast majority of improvement comes from sitting in a room by yourself doing something you don’t enjoy.
Many of your weaknesses are there because you avoid doing this.
If you want to be entertained, turn on the TV. If you want to improve, sit down, open your books and improve.
2. You have to walk before you can run
Most of you are wanting some new shiny technique or secret strategy. The ‘secret’ is that you have to master the fundamentals first.
Many of you say you understand how to do X. When I look at your writing, it’s very obvious you don’t.
Focus on getting the basics right.
3. Avoid shiny object syndrome
Most of you want something ‘new’ before you have mastered the old.
Focus on understanding the course 100%. That is all you need to do.
4. You have to do the work
When I show some of the students how much work they have to do, they are shocked. One asked for their money back . I happily agreed.
Nobody, honestly, achieved anything in this world without hard work. Why would this be different?
5. Practice makes perfect
It sounds really simple, but unless you practice the fundamentals over and over again, you won’t progress.
For example, if you are bad at paraphrasing, I don’t have some secret technique that I’m keeping from you and I’ll only sell it to you for 1,000,000 dollars.
The ‘secret’ is you learn what I’ve taught you already and then paraphrase 25, 50, 100 questions until you get it right.
Saying you are going to do something and then actually doing it is very powerful stuff.
7. Be realistic
I created a study plan for one student which would have guaranteed they got the score they needed if they did everything I asked of them. 3 months was the minimum time it would take them to reach their goal.
Their reaction- ‘I want it faster than that.’
I just gave them their money back. There’s nothing I can do to help if someone is not living in the real world.
8. Experts are experts for a reason
Many of you are doctors. How many times per day do people, despite no knowledge of medicine or any experience treating patients, think they know better than you?
I don’t know everything. No teacher does. But I have helped thousands of students over the course of many years and I’ve spent between 50-80 hours a week helping people with this for this past number of years. I think that makes me somewhat qualified to tell you that I know more about this than you.
9. Help me to help you
Another student wants help with their writing but refuses to show me their writing.
I’ll just leave that there.
10. Implement, implement, implement
Learning alone isn’t going to help you.
Practice alone isn’t going to help you.
Learning from an expert and then implementing what they’ve taught you is going to help you.
It doesn’t have to be any more complicated than that.
11. ‘I already know all that.’
If a teacher tells you that you can’t do X yet and you need to review module Y.
You have two options:
a) Do it.
b) Say you already know how to do it and ignore them.
One student makes the same grammar errors over and over again. I suggested they start with the rules of that grammar point. ‘I already know all that.’ was their response.
Again, I’ll just leave that there.
12. If you say you can’t, you will never be able to
One student, who is a lovely person, but is one of the most negative people I’ve ever met. She sends emails every day telling me how terrible she is and she if going to fail.
With that attitude, she is probably correct.
Others are more optimistic. They know they have a problem but put their energy into fixing the problem rather than writing emails about how terrible their life is.
Every day I work with you guys you make me realise something and it’s something I am really grateful for. You constantly teach me that success, in any area of life, is not linked to ability, intelligence or circumstance, it’s totally related to mindset. All of the things above are directly influenced by how you think about them. They require no talent or intellect. This means you can change all of them in one second by changing your mindset.