The Most Important Element of Success in Business… and its not Talent or Expertise

A few years ago, I was helping someone with their due diligence when they were contemplating purchasing a company.  He had hired the best attorneys and accountants to review the books and the contracts of the company and the company had proven to be legally and financially sound.   It was fairly certain that the company’s prior success would easily continue under new ownership with little work on the part of the new owner.  It was a good deal.

Two nights before closing, he and I were sitting in a conference room going over last-minute details and he looked sick with worry.   I turned to him and said, “You don’t want to do this do you?”  Before I could get another word out, he nodded, gathered the pile of folders in front of him and as he scurried for the door said, “Nope.  I just don’t have the guts for this.”

He had the experience and had certainly done his homework regarding the purchase.  What he didn’t have was guts and the ability to take action.  He had what I call paralysis by analysis.

Action will get you further than talent or expertise and even hard work.

Now don’t get me wrong.  The wrong action can get you in trouble.  But I see people all too often do nothing because they think it won’t get them in trouble.

Doing nothing because of fear is an action.  And its always the wrong action.

Entrepreneurship is like jumping off a cliff.  You don’t know when you jump if you are going to fly or fall to the ground.  You don’t know if your new product will be a raging success or the biggest flop ever.  I don’t propose you jump off a cliff without putting on a parachute.  You MUST do your due diligence and be prepared – but eventually you need to jump and you will never be totally ready to do so.  I can guarantee you though, that standing on the cliff holding your research in your hand will never allow you to fly.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a website or blog at

%d bloggers like this: