The difference between success and failure in any venture often cannot be attributed to a single incident or cause. It’s usually a culmination of factors including timing, execution, assumptions, economic factors, and more. While much has been written on the success of start ups, one factor usually sticks out in my mind. Recently a friend who is in the process of starting a business told me he was “overwhelmed and not sure of what he was doing.” I can relate to that feeling well. But my advice to him still rings true from the early days of my company, The A Group. My words of encouragement were simple: “Don’t quit. Success is 90% perseverance.”
I can’t quantify the percentage. But I know that the great majority of the successes I have seen in my professional career both in business as well as in ministry have been directly tied to my ability to keep going and not accept defeat. I have talked with others who have successful businesses and churches who share the same trait: perseverance. Since most entrepreneurs are usually “all in” and there is not a “Plan B” in place, we tend to keep going until something happens.
None of us knows when our next break is going to be–the meeting with a profitable new client, the phone call with a large order, the exchange with a wealthy donor. But we all know that if we are not there, none of them will ever come to fruition. So we continue to push forward, to persevere even when there are no signs of spring. In business, as in life, perseverance pays dividends. Be aware, however, that perseverance is not glamorous and often not fun, but absolutely essential.
Think about your life. Where do you need the most encouragement not to quit?