I saw this video of Ursula Burns, CEO of Xerox, and thought how right she is. As the first African-American woman to head a company on the S & P 100, I listen when she speaks. She worked her way up through the company starting as an intern and is obviously not afraid of hard work. In this video she makes an excellent point. In order to be truly successful, one must be great at one thing at least.
Penelope Trunk touches on this same concept in her post entitled “Being an Expert Takes Time Not Talent” (here). One of her questions is how does one decide what you are great at? Can you simply be good at many things and excellent at nothing? How long does it take to get great? These are questions I have recently asked myself. I doubt there is one correct answer but a few things stuck in my head. How important is coaching and mentoring in reaching your ultimate goals? Can you coach yourself through research and the blessing that is the internet? Many people never get mentored and in turn make it a point to mentor those who want to follow in their footsteps. Would these leaders have reached their goals faster had they had guidance? Quite possibly. I wonder what you think. How important is greatness? Do you think you are great at anything? Is greatness necessary to reach your goals?