[MMM] The Real Truth About Overnight Success

Nov 6, 2016  – The Overnight Addition


Good Monday Morning!


I confess. There is a part of me that thinks that career success can happen over night.


I don’t think I’m alone in this though. I think you might be reading this today and be aware of that same secret subconscious thought.


It’s more of a wish than reality, but in the media-saturated age of Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, where information is transmitted at the speed of thought, doesn’t it feel somehow possible that we can all become an overnight success with one lucky viral pet video?


It’s simply not true.


I bought myself a new chess set. I call it “My Next Move” and I truly love this fusion of Weeble-Wobbles carved into beautiful pieces of wood. I learned to play chess as a kid, while I was at camp during the summer. We used to play on those steamy afternoons right after our fishing elective. (Which, by the way, once ended in a trip to the hospital with a fish hook stuck near my temple… but that is a story for another day.)


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Bobby Fischer, considered by many to be the greatest chess player of all time, said the following: “A strong memory, concentration, imagination, and a strong will is required to become a great chess player.


He is also quoted as saying, “What happened? One day I just got good.


You don’t get great playing chess over night. You don’t become great at your profession or as a leader over night, either.


You work at your craft – hourly, daily, weekly, monthly – when you feel like it, and when you don’t. With good leaders &  poor leaders; peers that you enjoy, and peers who drive you nuts; projects that are interesting, and projects that feel like they’ll never end. With crappy pay, with great pay, sometimes even with no pay at all. You’ll slog through it all with determination…


… and then, you realize something. It happened so gradually that you almost didn’t notice. On that day, you will look back and realize… you just got good.


One step at time, along the road with you!




P.S. Our next Luncheon, Networking, and Information Session for Federal Government employees is scheduled for November 17 at 12:00 pm in our downtown Ottawa office. Click here for information & to RSVP >


P.S. Are you looking to improve your leadership capacities and build great teams? RSVP for our next CareerClass webinar: Leadership Begins With You on Wed Nov 9 from 12 to 1 pm ET. Limited spots available – Click to register >