Whenever I have had the pleasure of speaking to successful people, no matter how you define success, I almost invariably come away with the following realization:
Success is a daily journey with two vital core tenets:
Two perfect examples immediately come to mind. One from several years ago and one from just last week:
Several years ago, I had the pleasure of serving with, and learning from, one of the most talented managers I have ever met. Prior to my working with him, He enjoyed a long and successful career managing distribution and warehouse operations for one of America’s best known retailers.
This manager was “Mr. Fix It” when it came to transforming his company’s worst performing distribution centers. He had a well earned reputation of turning around centers in some of this country’s worst urban environments. In multiple cases he was brought into situations where the culture among the employees within the distribution center was rife with turn-over, absenteeism and harassment (both mental and physical) resulting from racial conflict and gang activity.
When I asked him how he was able to be successful given the volatile and stressful nature of these kinds of environments, he simply said “patience and persistence…that, and strong belief that the changes I was making were the right things to do”. He then said something I have never, ever forgotten. “Brian” he said “You know…Rome wasn’t built in a day”. I replied, “yes…I’ve heard that before”. He paused, then said “But, it was built daily!!!
Exactly a week ago, our Founder and CEO, Jerry L. Mills said something to me that I will also remember for ever: “My kids acknowledge that I am successful. They are young and have even wondered and asked me if they will be as successful as I have been. Here is what I have said to them…Successful careers are made up of successful years. Successful years are made up of successful months. Successful months are made up of successful weeks and successful weeks are made up of successful days. Success is a daily pursuit.”