The Key to Success for MEN

By Jackie Mathys  |  January 12, 2020

Lady readers, hold that thought.

Indulge me a moment while you suspend your outrage at the language above. It was not an intentional slight. It was the times—1919, to be exact—when men were men and the female pronoun hadn’t been invented yet. All of the business world’s problems weighed entirely on the shoulders of men. Well, their secretaries’ shoulders if we’re keeping it real, but I digress!

As a SUCCESSFUL woman who is always interesting, I love and collect old business books from back then. They all read like this, but I choose to chuckle at the gender stuff and focus instead on the message, which still resonates 100 years later. I also find the writing style cute as a button.

We are more interested in success than anything else in the world. When we hear of a man who has attained it, we rush to him with curious eyes.

Reading the author’s simple, reassuring passage calms me down. Not one single thought went into SEO during its writing. The author wasn’t thinking about keywords, clicks, or likes. I’m guessing his mission that day was to jot down some thoughts in a couple of clear, concise paragraphs, share some business wisdom he’d picked up over the years, then get some supper.

I don’t care that he didn’t have me—or half of the population—in mind while writing his book. Not everything has to be a fight. What mattered was getting his idea across: Show some initiative and you can be successful, no matter who you are. Even if you’re a girl, it turns out.

Here’s the whole excerpt, from “Go!” by George Harrison Phelps