I always like to share this story in our strategy sessions. It’s the story of when Bill Gates first met Warren Buffet.
When Bill Gates first met Warren Buffett, it was at a dinner for successful people. Their host was Gates’ mum. She asked everyone around the table to identify what they believed was the single most important factor in their success through life. Gates and Buffett gave the same one-word answer: “Focus.”
Gladwell explained in his book, The Outliers, that practice is a key factor to success. He called this the 10,000 hours factor. It is sort of like the Greek myth of “The fox versus the Hedgehog”.
Consistency is key. And its synonyms include focus, discipline, routine and practice. The problem with most people is that they just don’t stay long enough.
Motivation gets you going–Discipline keeps you growing. Develop the good habits that lead to success. Just showing up is 80% of success. Some people just don’t show up. You can beat them pretty easily by just being consistent in showing up.
The problem with growth is, most people are not focused enough to follow through with work. There’s nothing you dedicate and give your whole self into that it doesn’t give itself back to you. There’s nothing you progressively spread your 10 000 hours into that you won’t become a master and success in. Yes I said it!
Outliers and Hedgehogs (unlike foxes) are focused and have mastered an art, on the other hand, it has simplified all that they know, have and “how” from a complex world into a single organizing idea, a basic principle or concept that unifies and guides everything all through. They seem to have a template for having the same results over and over again.
Amateurs practice till they get it right, but pros and masters have practiced till they can’t get it wrong.
I hope this makes sense?
Strategy. Business StartUps and Corporate Restructuring Consulting
Uwaoma Eizu is the lead strategist at Hexavia! He is a graduate of Mathematics with two MBAs and over a decade of experience working with startups and big businesses. His core is in building startups and in corporate restructuring. He is also a certified member of the Nigerian Institute of Management, Institute of Strategic Management of Nigeria and the Project Management Institute, USA. By the side, he writes weekly for the BusinessDay newspaper.