11 Signs You Have the Grit You Need To Succeed

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There are a ton of qualities that can help you succeed, and the more carefully a quality has been studied, the more you know it’s worth your time and energy.

Angela Lee Duckworth was teaching seventh grade when she noticed that the material wasn’t too advanced for any of her students. They all had the ability to grasp the material if they put in the time and effort. Her highest performing students weren’t those who had the most natural talent; they were the students who had that extra something that motivated them to work harder than everyone else.

Angela grew fascinated by this “extra something” in her students and, since she had a fair amount of it herself, she quit her teaching job so that she could study the concept while obtaining a graduate degree in psychology at UPenn.

Her study, which is ongoing, has already yielded some interesting findings. She’s analyzed a bevy of people to whom success is important: students, military personnel, salespeople, and spelling bee contestants, to name a few. Over time, she has come to the conclusion that the majority of successful people all share one critical thing–grit.

Grit is that “extra something” that separates the most successful people from the rest. It’s the passion, perseverance, and stamina that we must channel in order to stick with our dreams until they become a reality.

Developing grit is all about habitually doing the things that no one else is willing to do. There are quite a few signs that you have grit, and if you aren’t doing the following on a regular basis, you should be.

You have to make mistakes, look like an idiot, and try again, without even flinching. In a recent study at the College of William and Mary, they interviewed over 800 entrepreneurs and found that the most successful among them tend to have two critical things in common: They’re terrible at imagining failure and they tend not to care what other people think of them. In other words, the most successful entrepreneurs put no time or energy into stressing about their failures as they see failure as a small and necessary step in the process of reaching their goals.

You have to fight when you already feel defeated. A reporter once asked Muhammad Ali how many sit-ups he does every day. He responded, “I don’t count my sit-ups, I only start counting when it starts hurting, when I feel pain, cause that’s when it really matters.” The same applies to success in the workplace. You always have two choices when things begin to get tough: you can either overcome an obstacle and grow in the process or let it beat you. Humans are creatures of habit. If you quit when things get tough, it gets that much easier to quit the next time. On the other hand, if you force yourself to push through it, the grit begins to grow in you.

You have to make the calls you’re afraid to make. Sometimes we have to do things we don’t want to do because we know they’re for the best in the long-run: fire someone, cold call a stranger, pull an all-nighter to get the company server back up, or scrap a project and start over. It’s easy to let the looming challenge paralyze you, but the most successful people know that in these moments, the best thing they can do is to get started right away. Every moment spent dreading the task subtracts time and energy from actually getting it done. People that learn to habitually make the tough calls stand out like flamingos in a flock of seagulls.

You have to keep your emotions in check. Negative emotions will challenge your grit every step of the way. While it’s impossible not to feel your emotions, it’s completely under your power to manage them effectively and to keep yourself in a position of control. When you let your emotions overtake your ability to think clearly, it’s easy to lose your resolve. A bad mood can make you lash out or stray from your chosen direction just as easily as a good mood can make you overconfident and impulsive.

You have to trust your gut. There’s a fine line between trusting your gut and being impulsive. Trusting your gut is a matter of looking at decisions from every possible angle, and when the facts don’t present a clear alternative, you believe in your ability to choose; you go with what looks and feels right.

You have to give more than you get in return. There’s a famous Stanford experiment where an administrator leaves a child in a room with a marshmallow for 15 minutes, telling the child that she’s welcome to eat the marshmallow, but if she can wait until the experimenter gets back without eating it, she will get a second marshmallow. The children that were able to wait until the experimenter returned experienced better outcomes in life, including higher SAT scores, greater career success, and even lower body mass indexes. The point being that delay of gratification and patience are essential to success. People with grit know that real results only materialize when you put in the time and forego instant gratification.

You have to lead when no one else follows. It’s easy to set a direction and believe in yourself when you have support, but the true test of grit is how well you maintain your resolve when nobody else believes in what you’re doing. People with grit believe in themselves no matter what and they stay the course until they win people over to their way of thinking.

You have to meet deadlines that are unreasonable and deliver results that exceed expectations. Successful people find a way to say yes and still honor their existing commitments. They know the best way to stand out from everyone else is to outwork them. For this reason, they have a tendency to over-deliver, even when they over promise.

You have to focus on the details even when it makes your mind numb.Nothing tests your grit like mind-numbing details, especially when you’re tired. The more people with grit are challenged, the more they dig in and welcome that challenge, and numbers and details are no exception to this.

You have to be kind to people who have been rude to you. When people treat you poorly, it’s tempting to stoop to their level and return the favor. People with grit don’t allow others to walk all over them, but that doesn’t mean they’re rude to them, either. Instead, they treat rude and cruel people with the same kindness they extend to anyone else, because they won’t allow another person’s negativity to bring them down.

You have to be accountable for your actions, no matter what.
People are far more likely to remember how you dealt with a problem than they are how you created it in the first place. By holding yourself accountable, even when making excuses is an option, you show that you care about results more than your image or ego.

Bringing It All Together

Grit is as rare as it is important. The good news is any of us can get grittier with a little extra focus and effort.

 

Thanks to Dr. Travis Bradberry for Post!

Author of #1 bestselling book, Emotional Intelligence 2.0, and president of TalentSmart, world’s leading provider of emotional intelligence.

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The Top 10 Most Remarkable Marketing Campaigns EVER!

10) The Whopper Sacrifice 

Brand: Burger King / Creative Partner: Crispin Porter & Bogusky

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The OMFG! Factor:

Sacrifice ten Facebook friends. Get a free Whopper.

Sounds simple enough, right? But what made this campaign particularly remarkable is that it challenged the very nature of the platform on which it played out, and tapped into the essence of how social networks have changed our ideas of what “friendship” means. Whopper Sacrifice (a Facebook app) launched in early 2009 with little fanfare and almost no media support — and lasted only 10 days before Facebook shut it down on the basis of “user privacy violation” (the app notified friends when they were deleted). Sure, they gave away 20,000 free Whoppers. But the infamy and buzz they gained? Priceless.

Steal This:

  • Use a really, really, really simple call-to-action.
  • Don’t be afraid to push the envelope.

9) True Blood: Revelation

Brand: HBO / Creative Partners: Campfire  And Company

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The OMFG! Factor:

What made the marketing campaign for HBO’s first season of True Blood so remarkable was the way it was woven into the mythology of the show itself. Vials of a mysterious red liquid with messages in a “dead language” were mailed to goth and horror bloggers, leading them to a “vampire-only” website called BloodCopy.com. Videos featuring “real vampires” debating whether or not they should reveal themselves to an unsuspecting human populace were “leaked.” An outdoor poster campaign promoting a new beverage called TruBlood (available for sale at http://www.trubeverage.com) and featuring PSAs supporting equal rights for vampires appeared in major metro areas — none of which ever mentioned the TV show.

By creating a complex backstory about a synthetic beverage that enabled vampires to “live among humans,” HBO and its creative partner, Campfire, were able to tap into an existing community of horror aficionados and organically build an audience that made True Blood one of HBO’s most anticipated and successful show debuts.

Steal This:

  • Find the “niche” audience that is super passionate about your product or mission, and explore ways to intrigue, inspire, and deeply entertain them.
  • Invest in really good storytelling.

8) The REFRESH Project

Brand: Pepsi / Creative Partner: TBWA Worldwide

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The OMFG! Factor:

After 23 years and hundreds of millions of dollars spent on Super Bowl ads, one of the world’s biggest brands broke new ground in 2010 by opting out of the Super Bowl and pouring 1/3 of
its annual marketing budget into a cause-driven social marketing campaign called “The Refresh Project.”

The Refresh Project featured a pledge from Pepsi to hand out more than $20 million in grants to do-good projects in six categories and in what has since been coined “crowd-sourced philanthropy” (the audience voted on who got the grants). Sadly, the campaign was pulled after 10 months due to fraud allegations and slipping market share — yet the influence of The Refresh Project as a remarkable example of behemoth brands committing more dollars (and brain cells) to digital and social media continues to be felt.

Steal This:

  • Been doing the same thing for 23 years? Surprise the hell out of everyone by not doing it. At least once.
  • Even high-profile, high-budget “do good” programs don’t do much good if they’re not authentic and brand-relevant. Learn from Pepsi’s mistakes.

7) Elf Yourself

Brand: Office Max / Creative Partners: Jason Zada  EVB  Toy  Maccabee Group

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The OMFG! Factor:

Who knew uploading images of yourself, friends, or loved ones — then watching them dance as Christmas elves — would be so remarkable? It was a simple idea, but at the time of its launch in 2006, a groundbreaking one. Let people star in their own interactive ecard? Virtually unheard of … but totally awesome. Six years and over half a billion shares later, Elf Yourself can boast not only of being a viral phenomenon, but also an enduring success — one that has literally become a holiday tradition.

Steal This:

  • Give your audience opportunities to “star” in your marketing.
  • Create an annual tradition (that gets better every year!).
  • Make it wicked easy to participate, and just as easy to “share.”

6) The Man Your Man Could Smell Like

Brand: Old Spice / Creative Partner: Weiden + Kennedy

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The OMFG! Factor:

The Old Spice Man debuted in a 2010 Super Bowl ad, bringing humor, sex appeal, and intrigue to a brand that was all but forgotten. Five months later, he made marketing history by appearing in a series of 180 near real-time videos that not only got the attention of celebrities like Demi Moore and Ellen DeGeneres, but also helped Procter & Gamble amass over 40 million views on YouTube and enjoy a 107% increase in body wash sales within 30 days of the campaign launch.

Steal This:

  • Got a spokesperson for your brand? Make sure he/she appeals to and entertains both genders, and provide opportunities for your audience to engage with him/her both on and offline.
  • Short, frequent, episodic, and highly shareworthy content will be shared more than the usual marketing fodder.

5) The Best Job in the World

Brand: Queensland Board of Tourism / Creative Partner: Nitro

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The OMFG! Factor:

Wait … you want to pay me $150,000 to spend 6 months cleaning the pool, feeding the fish, collecting the mail, and exploring a gorgeous, little-known island off the Great Barrier Reef? And all I have to do is submit a one-minute video about why I should get the job? Yes, yes, that’s exactly what the Queensland Board of Tourism did in 2009 in a remarkable campaign that relied on a most unlikely media channel — the “Jobs” section of newspapers.

Fueled by an extraordinary streak of PR and clever use of social media, the Board received over 7 million visitors, 34,000 applicants from 200 countries, and 500,000 votes for this once-in-a-lifetime job. And the lucky winner? Well, he continues his reign of Remarkableness as the Ambassador of Queensland Tourism. Lucky bastard.

Steal This:

  • Experiment with non-traditional marketing channels.
  • Remember that no brand is too small to make a giant, remarkable splash.

4) In Rainbows

Radiohead

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The OMFG! Factor:

The music industry used to have a really simple formula: talent + record label + plastic discs = dollars. But digital and social technology completely disrupted that formula — and a few risk-taking, innovative folks like Thom Yorke of Radiohead, disrupted right back. In Rainbows, which was the band’s seventh album, was released directly to fans with an offer that was altogether unheard of: Pay what you want.

To date, the band reports that their OMFG! strategy paid off — with 3 million downloads in the first year and a cool $10 million in revenue — by far, the band’s biggest commercial success EVER. It’s no wonder The New York Times hailed this establishment-bucking quintet from Oxfordshire as a band “fast becoming as
synonymous with technological mischief as they are with music.” BOO-YA!

Steal This:

3) Let’s Motor

Brand: Mini Cooper / Creative Partners: Crispin Porter + Bogusky

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The OMFG! Factor:

In Europe, the Mini Cooper had long been an icon. But in the gas-guzzling, SUV-loving USA, the teeny weeny Mini had only 2% brand awareness and even less market share. So what’s a clever marketer to do? Why, accentuate that difference, of course!

Rather than pursue the same-old, same-old TV/print/radio ad formula that most car brands were following at the time, Mini and its ever-innovating agency partner decided to eschew traditional media in favor of playing up the fun-factor of the car itself — in shopping malls, on street corners, glued to billboards … and other unlikely places where only a tiny vehicle with awesome gas mileage and a kind price tag could shine. Ten years later, Mini had not only far surpassed its goals of market share and sales in an indisputably disastrous automobile market — it also saw the U.S. surpass the UK as the brand’s biggest-selling single market in the world.

Steal This:

  • Focus on the one thing that makes you undeniably different from all your competitors. Double down on that one thing.
  • Screw the cow path. Blaze your own trail.

2) The BLAIR WITCH PROJECT

Brand: Artisan Entertainment

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The OMFG! Factor:

Arguably the very first online “viral” marketing campaign predating YouTube, Facebook, MySpace, and even Friendster, The Blair Witch Project remains an often-imitated, never-duplicated runaway success. Shot on a shoestring budget of just $22,000, the film raked in over $250 million, thanks in part to its novel approach of terrifying audiences into believing that the fictitious story of three missing film students was 100% real. The key? A deft combination of “found footage,” strategically seeded rumors on online message boards, and a series of low-budget ads and trailers that perpetuated the legend.

Steal This:

  • TELL GREAT STORIES! (Sound familiar?)
  • It doesn’t have to cost a fortune to be remarkable.

1) 2008 Presidential Campaign

Barack Obama

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The OMFG! Factor:

In early 2007, Barack Obama was a one-term senator with a funny-sounding name and less than 10% brand recognition. Eighteen months later, Obama went on to raise more money than any other presidential candidate in U.S. history, ultimately landing him the title of 44th President of the United States of America.

How did he achieve this? In part, because of a brilliantly executed marketing campaign that leveraged social technology and grassroots support in ways his competitors hadn’t even considered. He dominated not only YouTube with over 20 million views, but also claimed the most popular fan page on Facebook (with 2.5 million fans vs. McCain’s 625,000 at the time), broke down barriers with his social media-friendly campaign website that bestowed genuine, in-action photos, videos, and issue-oriented calls-to-action upon its visitors daily — and ultimately, rode that online popularity all the way to the White House, becoming not only the first U.S. President to have a presence on social media, but also the first one to fully grasp and connect with his constituents across ALL of the channels that matter to them now.

Steal This:

  • If the freakin’ president of the USA can master this social media stuff, so can you.

Let’s Add YOU to this list…….WishCreativeMedia@gmail.com

Thanks Hubspot for the Post!

Annnnnnd We’re Back!

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Please excuse our brief hiatus from industry news, client updates, event reviews and all that other stuff…

Wish Creative has taken on the challenge of re-focusing our brand and clientele as the needs of our community and our industry has evolved in the past few years.

We are excited to bring you what we are working on and who we are working with…and  truly appreciate your patience and support….Now let’s get to the business!!

 

Kimberly Jo