Chapter 11Positive Leaders Have Grit

The number one predictor and factor of success is not talent, title, wealth, or appearance. It is grit!

Angela Duckworth's research at the University of Pennsylvania identifies grit as the number-one predictor and factor of success. It's not talent, title, wealth, or good looks. It's grit, the ability to work hard for a long period of time towards a goal; to persevere, overcome, and keep moving forward in the face of adversity, failure, rejection, and obstacles.16 Success doesn't happen overnight. Anything worthwhile takes time to build. Along the way a leader will face countless challenges, failures, and setbacks that will become roadblocks unless they find a way forward. Positive leaders have grit and find a way to navigate the roadblocks or run through them to move closer to their vision and goal.

When we look at successful companies and organizations, we see their current success and prominence but what we don't see is the leadership and grit that powered them through all the failure and moments of doubt, heartache, fear, and pain. Everyone would now like to be Kevin Plank, the CEO of Under Armour, but I'm guessing they wouldn't have wanted to be him in 1995 when he was selling one product, a new high-performance t-shirt, from the basement of his grandmother's home in Washington, DC, and financing his venture with a $40,000 loan from his maxed-out credit cards. Everyone would love to enjoy the success Sara Blakely, the owner of Spanx, ...

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