Interest - Perseverance

Originally created by !!  SelfReferential
6 years ago.

on 2 Roots



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Ignoring a few potential complicating factors (including nasty politics, sabotage, the tendency of employers to abuse employees willing to work harder than normal, and a few other things), this is a largely true parable with a cogent and useful message.

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Aww, crap! This was supposed to be a reply to CtG's post! Is it possible for somebody to move/delete it? I'm sorry! D:

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There were two new hires in a big company. These two new hires were friends since their university days, but they were quite different from each other. The first new hire was brimming with knowledge and had excellent grades in school. He was immediately hired with a signing bonus. The second new hire didn't have a reputation of "knowing everything" unlike the first classmate. He graduated with okay grades, so he went through the screening process just like the rest of the new applicants but was eventually given the position.

The two new hires met in the office and shared with each other their experiences on the hiring process. The first new hire told of how he breezed through the exam, and the interview seemed more like a formality and more like a casual talk. The second new hire recounted how he was the last one to submit his paper, and that he struggled in answering his interview questions. It seemed to them both that the first new hire would rise through the ranks very quickly and soon become a manager or even vice president.

They eventually met with their supervisor and they were set to training and work. The first new hire was able to grasp his training lessons quickly and immediately stood out in the office for his speed and efficiency in performing the work assigned. The second new hire had to review the training materials at home, but he was able to perform his tasks satisfactorily. He seemed ordinary and in-the-background though, because he didn't have the superstar-caliber talent that his fellow new hire did.

A few weeks into their employment, their manager requested a detailed report on sales per customer and month, with supporting explanation on significant variances. The first new hire took one look at the long record of sales in the books and immediately bowed his head. He knew it was too long to complete even with some overtime. The second new hire also saw that the sales record was rather long and came to the same conclusion as his colleague. He knew he would be tired if he did it. However, he understood that his manager needed it, so he accepted the job.

He toiled the rest of the day, and into the night. He was unable to finish the task even though it was well past midnight. He left his work then to rest, since he did tire of the work, and wanted to quit. But he still arrived early the next morning to continue his work. He took no shortcuts about his work and made sure that even the finest details were looked into because the manager needed it for his decision-making. That afternoon, he came to his manager's office with the complete detailed report. The manager was impressed with the staff's work, even though there were some formatting faults here and there.

Over the following months, the manager continuously assigned tedious and challenging tasks to the second employee. He often grew tired, and had bouts of doubt about the job he chose. Still, he stuck with it and kept pushing despite all the hardship because he understood that his manager needed his output. Gradually, he grew a reputation for being the one who delivers results.

While the first employee still had ease about his work, he sometimes refused work that would be too tedious to perform. The second employee gained the confidence of his manager because of his dedication and hard work. With that, he was given work relating to more confidential information, and soon also grew the trust of his manager. Soon enough, the second employee was given the promotion over the first employee for his ability to get things done.

What is clear here about perseverance is that people like the second employee don't need to be very smart or influential to succeed. It can be seen from the story that the *attitude* of the second employee about the work is that it needs to be done, unlike that of the first employee that's more of that the work is trouble that should be avoided. While avoiding stress is only natural in people, and that there's nothing wrong with trying to avoid it; people who persevere in spite of the stress will stand a better chance of getting results than do people who are intimidated by the challenge.

It is also true that sometimes, just perseverance is not enough. In my example earlier, the second employee also needed to have sufficient know-how to get his work done. He can't do it with "all heart and no brains". But his "heart" is the one that drove him to excel and achieve what the one who had only "the brains" could not. Some people can and do succeed even without perseverance, of course. They can either be born in a rich and/or influential family, or have incredible luck or talent or even beauty. But one thing about perseverance is that ANYONE can have it. It doesn't have to be in-born either. I can personally testify to that with my own experience.

If you weren't born with an innate talent, perseverance is your most reliable shot at success. That's why I like it.