The P word
All week I have not been able to get away from the word Persistence.
It turned up in an email from one of my mentors, and in another from my coach, the next chapter I read in my book was on Persistence, the current lesson I am delivering in my HIGH FLYERS course is on the topic of Persistence and it was a key theme in at least two of the Podcasts I listened to on the way to client meetings this week. Someone is being pretty persistent in making sure I get the message…
This week I was listening to internet entrepreneur Russell Brunson and he said something very thought provoking, he said that he thought only 3% of people are Ambitious. And by this, he explained, that only about 3% of people are prepared to do anything to get what they want. Most people desire or wish their situation to change, but only about 3% are prepared to actually put any effort in to make the changes happen.
This correlates with another statistic I heard last week from Teachable.com who provide an online training delivery platform (which I use for some of my courses, take a look and try a free one at: http://cool-waters.teachable.com). They said that a typical conversion rate for people visiting course sales pages on their site is 2% - that is only 2% of people who visit the enrolment page for a course actually sign up. This is despite most courses having a ‘no-questions’ money back guarantee – so there is no risk to sign up, decide you don’t like it and then ask for your money back. People are interested enough to clink a link and read about a course, but only 2% are prepared to put in the effort of signing up for a course and putting in the work in order to see the changes they desire in their life and circumstances.
James Allen wrote: Men are anxious to improve their circumstances, but are unwilling to improve themselves; therefore they remain bound.
We are all looking for a quick win or a magic wand that will fix everything for us – but such things do not exist I’m afraid. You’re not a wizard Harry, so you have to put the work in like everyone else…
In his book the 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, John Maxwell defines his Law of Process: Leadership develop daily, not in a day. His point being, the process of moving from one state to another, to transform a situation from one thing to another, is a series of many small events, not one big bang change that happens overnight. A mistake we often make is to overestimate the importance of an event and underestimate the power of process.
Consistent small improvements over a period of time will achieve very significant impact in any situation. And to make that happen you need persistence – the drive and desire to keep going while the returns still look small and then to keep on going until the benefits are visible and the returns look larger and then to keep on going and not fall into the trap of thinking good enough is good enough but instead to keep on going and continue to improve to go from good to great and from great to world class. All it needs is persistence. Persistence is not one long race, it is a series of short races one after another.
President Calvin Coolridge is quoted as saying: Nothing in the World can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination are omnipotent. The slogan "press on" has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.
A story is told about an old gold prospector who spent several years panning for gold, working his way down the stream that ran through his stake of land but he found nothing and eventually gave up – sold his land at a loss and returned home. The person who bought the land from him continued to work the same riverbed from point where the old prospector left off and around the very next bend he found a rich vein of gold. As Thomas Edison says: Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.
So my challenge to you this week is two fold :
- First, are you a three percenter – are you going to decide to be one of the three percent of people who does more than wish their situation were different but to actually take action to make the change happen
- Secondly, will you be persistent – to keep on going until you achieve your desired change?
Persistence is one of the 10 Essential Attitudes of Leadership which is covered in my HIGH FLYERS course. HIGH FLYERS is a 20 week course that will equip you to make the transition from a technical career track into leadership and help you mentor and lead those members of your team who desire to make the same change. You can enrol today at www.cool-waters.co.uk/highflyers and try a free preview lesson.
Make today the day that you join the three percenters – don’t just wish – take action.