The Path to Success

Michael Hyatt is the CEO of a large publishing company. Is there some sort of secret to his success? What did he do to get to where he is now? He is often asked questions along these lines, and he responds to the secret to his success:

I’m not sure I could boil it down to one thing. Life isn’t usually that simple. But if I really, really had to boil it down to one thing, I would say this: responsiveness.

So many people I meet are unresponsive. They don’t return their phone calls promptly. They don’t answer their emails quickly. They don’t complete their assignments on time. They promise to do something and never follow through. They have to be reminded, prodded, and nagged. This behavior creates work for everyone else and eats into their own productivity. Sadly, they seem oblivious to it.

Now certainly, success isn’t simply based on responsiveness, but it is an essential ingredient. It’s also important to be consistent. Remember that if your inbox is flooded with emails, you don’t have to write an essay to respond to each of them. Keep others informed of your progress and work hard. When the ball comes into your court, do something with it.

For a good summary of how to stay on top of your email inbox, partiallobotomy.com gives a few tips on overcoming email overload.

One thought on “The Path to Success

  1. Beth

    So, so true. It’s not just true in the corporate world, either — socially, you can totally make somebody’s day by just noticing things, you know?

    In the past, I’d never been a very good thank-you-note writer, but I’ve gotten better lately. I’ve found that, when you’re just a little organized (like, you know where pens and cards and stamps are), it really doesn’t take long to write a heartfelt note of appreciation. I bet it means a lot, too.

    And e-mail makes responding the easiest thing in the world! I send out mass-family-emails all the time, and I don’t expect a huge response back, or even one every week. But it is nice to know that somebody reads those things! And all it takes is hitting the reply button and a sentence or two.

    Might have to trackback this later, Alex — my comment is growing in length. 😉 Though I’ve got a great customer-service story, too. (Or, lack thereof.) Thanks for the good thoughts.

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