One Giant Lesson From the Research
It’s very dangerous to study success. So, we don’t study success; we study contrast. We study the contrast between success and failure. We study the contrast between endurance and collapse. We study the contrast between great and good. We study the contrast between those who thrive in chaos and those who do not. And it brings me to a key point right up front, from all our work. See, if we identify matched pairs of companies, matched pairs of enterprises that were in the same spot, same time, same opportunities, same resources, with the same potential; and yet one becomes great and the other does not. One thrives in chaos; the other does not. One keeps climbing while the other falls. Yet their circumstances were identical or very similar at the start. You come to an inevitable conclusion. The answer, the cause of why one becomes great and another does not, cannot be their circumstance. So, if I were to take one giant lesson from all twenty-five years of research, I’d put it to you right up front. Greatness is primarily not a function of circumstance. It is first and foremost a matter of conscious choice and discipline.
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