When you think about iconic sports films, what titles come to mind? Is it Rudy in his quest to play Notre Dame football? Perhaps it’s Rocky and his iconic run up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
How would you feel about those films if the protagonists immediately got what they wanted? Not such an interesting story, is it?
I’ve seen plenty of these stories on screen, and while many of them begin or end similarly, the critical component of the character’s journey is the obstacle they face and overcome. What makes a beloved classic like Rudy or Rocky so resonant is the protagonists’ persistence despite adversity. We love a good training montage that shows the rejected underdog putting the work in to achieve their dreams and exceed even their own expectations.
The same is true of leaders in all industries. We’ve all heard how Thomas Edison made 10,000 attempts at the light bulb before he achieved success, or how Bill Gates pitched his idea to 1,200 people and only received support from 11. What would our world look like today if these household names decided to take “no” for an answer?
I for one am glad Edison and Gates persisted, but let me ask you a scary question:
What could our world look like tomorrow if you persist today?
Hearing “no” once is disheartening. A thousand times is rough. Ten thousand? It would be difficult to criticize anyone who gave up at that point. But here’s the thing: When we face adversity, it likely isn’t because we are failing or incompetent. The longest, hardest part of our journey isn’t developing our talent. It’s maintaining our persistence.
It’s my privilege to search for the leaders of our future. In doing so, I consistently meet persistent professionals whose ideas and expertise will bring transformation to their organizations. Allow me to persist in finding your organization’s perfect fit.