Blog - Change in a changing world

What makes success?

I read a lot about what makes people and organisations successful and, in my opinion, most of it is tosh. But one of the best articles on the topic I have read recently is this one, which includes a charming fable about two sons, one of whom is what the writer calls an 'initiator'. Such are the people who don't need to be asked twice, who go the extra mile to find better and smarter ways of doing things, and who simply get the job done. Like the younger son in the fable, they come back and tell you how they achieved something rather than giving you the reasons why it could not be done.


True initiators are a rare breed, especially amongst recent graduates and people entering the workforce for the first time, and I think these attributes are more common for some reason amongst young women than young men, although young men often catch up after a bit of experience (and I think that was true of myself).


A successful organisation in today's dynamic world has to be one that recruits initiators and allows them to thrive. Not everyone can be an initiator so it is a matter of identifying and supporting those who are early on, because such people will always gravitate to environments that encourage their initiative and won't stay in organisations that don't.