Over 50% of CEOs of Fortune 500 companies had a C or C- average in University.
75% of US presidents were in the lower half club in school.
Over 50% of millionaire entrepreneurs never finished University.
These statistics are cited in the opening remarks of John C. Maxwell’s book, ‘Talent is Never Enough’ and while this may be perceived as an excuse not to care about academics, it reveals something very different. Results in education are important as shown in countless other studies – but it isn’t enough. While intelligence is generally viewed as uniform in its application, in reality there are what Howard Gardener famously called ‘multiple intelligences’ and success as a leader requires a combination. Today I was privileged to be at a careers breakfast with Year 12 students and our alumni and it reminded me of this important message.
In forming a rich and wholesome Jewish identity, we need to ensure that each area of our multiple intelligences are engaged. As we enter into the month of Nissan, and approach Pesach, we see a beautiful portrayal of this. Appealing to people’s hearts, minds and stomachs, it is the ultimate apprenticeship in human liberty and Jewish legacy through experiential education. And what other lesson can you think of that still brings people in their 80s and infants into the same classroom (or table)? The taste of tears, the excitement of finding the afikoman, the existential challenge of looking at what we are slaves to in our own lives, and the bond of being with our family, are each ingredients in ensuring that the same lesson is enjoyed two nights in a row, annually, regardless of age and stage.
On Pesach night, we are all the educators and I encourage you to start thinking of something new and different that will speak to you and your family at the seder table, in preparation for this exciting evening. Shabbat Shalom!