Perseverance – Each week I will identify a different theme of the week and provide you with content, some original and some from external sources, around that theme.
This week’s theme is “perseverance” which is so vital to success in anything we do. With regard to business, the following quote form one of the articles in this week’s links is especially appropriate.
“A business fails when the entrepreneur quits.”
A Word on This Week’s Theme
I’m a member of BNI and, as such, strive to meet 1-to-1 with at least 1 fellow member per week. Last week, I met with one such member who happens to be in the banking industry. I was looking forward to the 1-to-1 in general but was particularly anxious to hear this person’s opinion on an idea I’ve been working on for the past 18 months.
Some ideas can just be launched almost as quickly as you come up with them. For example, the decision to write a book was nearly instantaneous and took a few months to write. The decision to produce a weekly podcast was followed up a week later with the first Business is ART podcast segment and we have now done over 30 of them for a growing audience. It’s easy to follow through when completion and payoff are quick.
But this particular idea is different. It requires a large investment of time and money over an extended period. So, naturally, there are points along the way that I ask myself, “Is it worth it?” I was at one such point last week.
This 1-to-1 was exactly what I needed and the person I met with said exactly what I needed to hear – not because she was being nice, but because she truly meant it. From time-to-time we need that validation and it is wise to conduct regular checks, even if it is just a gut-check, to make sure we aren’t throwing good money after bad. It’s so easy for us to have an idea and start blindly pursuing it.
Sometimes we need to seek the expertise of an unbiased person to tell us it isn’t such a great idea, confirm that it is, or guide us back on track if we get a little off. Sometimes we need to ignore the critics and circumstances and go for it any way. Sometimes we need to ignore our own self-doubt and remind ourselves that we can do it. Sometimes, we need to rise up from failure and push forward with renewed energy and urgency.
But always, we need to persevere.
In the immortal words of Dory from the animated feature film Finding Nemo, “Just keep swimming.”
This Week’s Links
Entrepreneur – What do you do when tragedy strikes? This Indianapolis restaurateur learned how to keep going. After reading her story, you can too.
Entrepreneur – We often talk about how failing is necessary to learning and that it’s not how you fail, but how you get up. In Business is ART I tell a simple story of literally falling in front of my then 12-year old son. An article related to the first one at Entrepreneur goes further and discusses why rising from the ashes is vital for disruption and innovation. I love this quote from the article, “…we use disaster as a clean slate to say, ‘Screw it; I’ve lost everything. I’ve got nothing left to lose.'”
Entrepreneur – And as a piece that appeared in Entrepreneur in 2014 says, businesses fail when entrepreneurs quit. The title of this one caught my eye and is very fitting to this week’s theme – Persevere, Laugh at the Absurd and Let Nothing Get on Your Nerves.
Inc. – Of course in honor of Mother’s Day we have to give a shout out to Moms. They are the symbol of perseverance. Inc. saluted moms everywhere with these 101 mom quotes. Spoiler alert, #101 is “A good mother loves fiercely but ultimately brings up her children to thrive without her.” And that’s exactly what perseverance in business should result in – a business that can thrive after we depart from it.
Inc. – We are fascinated with Steve Jobs and are likely to be talking about him 100 years from now, just as we still talk about the likes of Henry Ford. This article discuses why the legend of Steve Jobs perseveres – and the Jobs philosophy is a key, “You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.”
Lifehacker – What is the importance of perseverance on your health, life and work? I’m sure you know it is huge. Here, Lifehacker gives a more detailed answer.
TED – The byline for this TED Talk says it all – What are your dreams? Better yet, what are your broken dreams? Dan Pallotta dreams of a time when we are as excited, curious and scientific about the development of our humanity as we are about the development of our technology. “What we fear most is that we will be denied the opportunity to fulfill our true potential.”