Continuous effort--not strength or intelligence--is the key to unlocking our potential.
-Winston Churchill (1950), British Prime Minister
Superstar journalist Malcolm Gladwell tackles the topic of success in his new book Outliers. You must be good enough to enter a field, Gladwell says, but once you're in, who you know, how hard you work and how lucky you get, make all the difference in the world.
Fortune magazine's senior editor, Geoff Colvin, also just published his take on the same topic, success in Talent Is Overrated. Hard work is not enough, Colvin says, its the right kind of deliberate practice that boosts a person's chances of achieving greatness.
A third journalist, David Shenk is currently writing The Genius in All of Us, also about genius and success. Why all the books on success? Why are we enamoured with stars? Americans, are probably culturally predisposed to look up to successful people. We hold in our heart, and our founding documents, that each one is special with great potential to be someone and achieve great happiness. It is good to be reminded how to reach that wondrous potential.