Why It Is Important To Persevere

April 20, 2019

As I awoke yesterday morning and stumbled into my bathroom to brush my teeth, I was shocked to find that a small spider had made itself right at home in the corner of my sink. Disgusted, I quickly turned on the hot water in an attempt to flush the little critter down the sink. I let the water run long enough to insure a speedy trip down the drain and into the septic tank awaiting its arrival. After a minute or so I believed my family was rid of the arachnid forever. I proceeded to go about my daily activities to get ready for the day. I considered the spider matter closed and didn’t give the eight-legged trespasser another thought.

Fast forward 24 hours. I awoke to my surprise to find the same little spider perched comfortably in the exact spot! Somehow he had survived my man-made, Kohler induced, flood and had climbed its way back up the drain against all odds.

The spider was too small to for me to make out any of its features. However, I am certain that if I took out a magnifying glass and stared at its face I would see a wide grin just daring me to try to flush him down the sink again.

Throughout life we will all face challenges. Some big and some small. I have seen my fair share as I have embarked on starting a new marketing firm. Some challenges I could anticipate and some I’ve been blindsided by. One thing is for certain, if we are going to be any kind of success in life we are going to have to overcome challenges and keep persevering until we reach brighter days.

There are million quotes about the validity of perseverance. Perhaps my favorites are…

“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.” — Calvin Coolidge

or

“I’m convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.” — Steve Jobs

Today I faced yet another challenge. An account I had been pitching for months and felt almost guaranteed we would win, fell through with little to no explanation. We had done all the right things. We put in the time, research and effort to make sure that our solution was the best it could be. We had worked hard to build a rapport with all key stakeholders. As I went to bed after submitting our response I felt confident of victory. I soon learned that we didn’t win. As I started falling into an initial stage of depression, I looked down and saw the little spider I had tried to exterminate, sitting comfortable on his brand new web like nothing had happened.

Re-energized I redoubled my efforts and thought about what I might of missed in our pitch or what we could have done better. Even though we had “lost” I proceeded to send the client an unsolicited, finished solution to their problem with the only objective being that of assistance. I soon heard back that while we didn’t get the project they were exploring other opportunities for us to help, which is a much better place to be in than we were before.

The key point is that regardless of the outcome we didn’t give up and will continue to try to add value whether we are compensated or not. Hopefully that will speak volumes about who we are as company versus any outcome we could have gained by winning.

And it all started with a little spider in my bathroom. The whole experience quickly reminded me just how important it is to never give up and that losing is only temporary as long as we keep trying.

If you are facing adversity I hope this story will provide you with some comfort. No matter how tough things seem or become they will only get better if you just keep at it.