Every entrepreneur seeks success and looks to the most successful leaders for guidance and direction. What have they done to achieve success? Did they have in common a series of particular habits that helped them achieve their goals?
Is there a formula that predicts entrepreneurial success?
Yes, there is and Angela Duckworth is the one who discovered it.
Angela Duckworth is a psychology expert. She holds a PhD in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, a Master in Neuroscience from the University of Oxford and a Bachelor in Neurobiology at Harvard College.
Angela Duckworth (image source: angeladuckworth.com)
She spent her career looking for an answer to this question:
Why do some individuals accomplish more than others of equal intelligence?
The results of her research are detailed in her 2016 book Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, which is on New York Time’s best seller list.
IQ is not the only answer for high achievements
We know a lot about IQ, but previous scientific papers didn’t find a direct correlation between exceptional mental ability and high achievement. Studying the biographies of world-renowned personalities like Einstein, Darwin and others, researchers found that perseverance was at least as important as intelligence. Surprisingly, IQ accounts for up to one third of success.
This shines a light on a different corner: temperament.
What is Grit?
Building on previous research studies conducted by fellow psychologists, Angela Duckworth found the reason why most individuals use only a small part of their resources while a few exceptional individuals push themselves to their limits.
The reason is grit. Grit is the one personal quality shared by the most prominent leaders.
Angela defines Grit as perseverance and passion for long-term goals.
Grit entails working with great effort and determination toward challenges. Another feature of grit is the ability to maintain effort and interest over years despite failure, adversity and plateaus in progress.
The gritty individual approaches achievement as a marathon; his or her advantage is stamina.
When people experience disappointments or boredom in their entrepreneurial endeavors, most of them change direction or abandon altogether. Unlike them, the gritty individuals stay the course. Think Elon Musk, Steve Jobs and Jack Ma: faced with one failure after another, they didn’t surrender, they kept going for their dreams.
Grit is essential to high achievement
Individuals high in grit deliberately set for themselves extremely long-term objectives. They do not abandon their goals even in the absence of positive feedback.
Grit is as important as IQ
Researchers were surprised to discover the following: individuals who were less gifted than others achieved a lot more because they were committed to their ambitions. Likewise, highly gifted peers failed to reach the upper levels of their field.
Grit is more predictive of success than IQ
Individuals who used their abilities and resources to the maximum reached their goals more frequently then those who didn’t. Also researchers discovered that less bright individuals than their peers compensate by working harder and with more determination.
Find out how gritty you are!
In order to measure the grit of individuals, Angela Duckworth developed The Grit Scale. The Grit Scale is a questionnaire that shows the individual’s grit score from 0 to 5.
5 main key takeaways:
- Grit is an indication of success;
- Grit is as important as IQ;
- Grit grows with age;
- Grittier individuals had attained higher levels of education than less gritty individuals;
- Grittier individuals made fewer career changes than less gritty peers of the same age.