There is NO Clear Path to Success
“Observe the masses and do the opposite” is a phrase regularly thrown around our office, and it wasn’t until this Monday until I asked myself why? Why should we strive to be unique in a culture engineered to churn out corporate sheep?
The need to break the mold and to be innovative is born from the hunger to succeed so I thought exploring this would be a good place to start, to deconstruct how we define “success”.
The first thing I did was to define what success means for me. This is not what society, family or friends place value on but something that would fill me with purpose.
The truth is that the majority of us will settle in a role which for the most part we execute with as little effort as possible just to pay the bills. Or get roped into stressful high pressure roles by salary increases, promises of promotions and impressive job titles. For me these prospects have always scared me much more than pushing my comfort zones, taking risks and working hard.
I place a lot of value in the process of doing things that are hard, physically and mentally. I believe it develops a mental toughness and resilience that forms the backbone of most successful people. Often professional athletes make successful business professionals and this is no fluke, the work ethic and other skills they develop are transferable.
Over the last decade the world of business has changed dramatically, from a culture where businesses preyed upon the gullibility of its staff and customers to one where a single bad review can have colossal effects - we now truly live in a feedback society. In this result focused society where companies are stripped naked of their pretences; honesty, relevance and delivery has taken precedence and is rewarded by success. Thus our generation is quickly rejecting emotional, power hungry bosses, in place of fair, intelligent and composed leaders.
We want to be surrounded by smart, proactive, unique, often slightly insane people. Why? Because we can learn from them, because they teach us to seek out the passion and spontaneity in ourselves which can get squelched as we grow older. Because they teach us to embrace discomfort, to break conformity in order to reach our full potential.
There is unfortunately no guaranteed formula for success, but there are actions which are essential if you want a fighting chance - Working hard and doing things that others don’t in order to achieve things which others won’t.