One of my favorite quotes is:
Success is the ability to move from one failure to another without loss of enthusiasm.
It’s had to tell who to attribute this quote to. Some say Lincoln. Some say Churchill. Both are pretty smart – and so is the quote.
And I love it.
When I graduated college, one of my first jobs was as a bartender at the Ritz Carlton Hotel. It was a great learning period for a wide-eyed kid from a small town, with dreams of success. Since we weren’t a nightclub that made money off serving a million people per night, my job was to get each customer to stay longer and run up a larger tab.
They came in for a drink and I start a conversation. I strike on something interesting, they have another drink. I get them talking about themselves, well one more. Now I’m hungry so let’s get food. Now that $12 tab is $130, and I get my 20% tip.
Anyways – one of my best “go to” topics is the most interesting topic in the world: Themselves. If you can get someone to talk about themselves they will listen for hours. Then they will like you for being so interesting.
So I heard about the career paths of many successful people. What I quickly learned was: For the most part, the path to success/promotions/money comes from 1 of 2 Paths:
- Learn a specialized skill, which is useful or interesting, that <5% of the population have: This could be how to invent products we didn’t know we need. Could be a heart surgeon. Could be delivering talks (comedy, inspiration) that thousands will pay to hear. Or could be a consistent 15 foot jump shot or accurately throwing a football 50 yards
- Sell Shit: And sell a lot of it. Then teach others how to sell it. Then teach others how to teach others to sell it.
I think #2 is far more common. And, in my opinion, no skill is more important than the ability to make cold call after cold call without a drop in enthusiasm.
You can’t beat someone who never quits.