Success is The Long Game

10 Aug

One of the things that most characterises our age is our addiction to instant gratification. Sure, it is wonderful to have tools like internet shopping, which means that we are never more than a 24-hour delivery period from anything our hearts could possibly desire, but when it comes to success in business there is, I believe, no such phenomenon as overnight success.

If you really want to achieve your goals, one of the first things that you must do is acknowledge that it is going to take some time to get what you want, then plan your strategy, dig in and prepare for some hard graft. The American entertainer, Eddie Cantor, is credited with famously observing, “It took me 20 years to become an overnight success” and this is equally true of the world of business.

When Microsoft launched its first commercial version of Windows in 1985 the name Bill Gates was catapulted into the public arena and many people wondered where this sudden breakthrough in computer software had come from. The answer is that Gates had been obsessed with computers and computing since his days at preparatory school; any suggestion that his success was an overnight sensation would have been hotly refuted by Gates and his business associates.

What Gates did have was a deep interest in developing a product that would be easy to use and simplify computing for the average person in the street. These days few people remember that operating systems were comparatively complex and could be off-putting to the casual user. In order to fulfill the dream that one day a personal computer would be a part of every home it was necessary to develop user-friendly software.

Not many people will find themselves in the position of developing a product that will change the world, but the example of Bill Gates and Microsoft is equally applicable to any business venture. Having a great idea is an excellent start, but if you fail to back it up with solid research, development and marketing your chance of success will slip away from you.


In short, Bill Gates was a man with an obsession. All too often obsession is considered a negative trait, but if you are going to live with your business idea for years, it is very necessary.

In business obsession is a good thing.

Be obsessed.

Nigel Green deVere Group

Blog written 10th August




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