𝗕𝗼𝗿𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗔𝗶𝗻'𝘁 𝗦𝗲𝘅𝘆 𝗯𝘂𝘁 𝗪𝗶𝗻𝗻𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗜𝘀
Updated: Apr 22
In revolutions, non-violent protest is 50% likely to evoke change, whereas violent protest is 25% likely.* While fighting for change often contains danger, I had assumed that violent protest is much more likely to overturn corrupt governments.
Nonviolent protest is more effective, but also less stirring. While the goals are ambitious, the means seem almost boring. I started thinking about other instances where the approach to winning may appear less exciting:
- To become wealthy, it's not winning the lottery or starting a company (sorry fellow founders), but consistently saving into index funds.
- To become strong requires countless hours of workouts.
- To reach mastery in the arts, sports, and anything else means rigorous, repetitive training. The results are breathtaking, but the process…boring.
In business, long-term success relies on planning and measurement. The moments of recognition follow months and years of grinding.
Legendary football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant noted:
“𝘖𝘧𝘧𝘦𝘯𝘴𝘦 𝘴𝘦𝘭𝘭𝘴 𝘵𝘪𝘤𝘬𝘦𝘵𝘴. 𝘋𝘦𝘧𝘦𝘯𝘴𝘦 𝘸𝘪𝘯𝘴 𝘤𝘩𝘢𝘮𝘱𝘪𝘰𝘯𝘴𝘩𝘪𝘱𝘴.”
Blocking and tackling are the fundamentals to winning. You need a strategy and offense too, but those are meaningless without the basics.
For startups, maybe the parallel quote for success is:
"𝘝𝘪𝘴𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘺𝘪𝘦𝘭𝘥𝘴 𝘪𝘯𝘷𝘦𝘴𝘵𝘮𝘦𝘯𝘵. 𝘌𝘹𝘦𝘤𝘶𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘣𝘶𝘪𝘭𝘥𝘴 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘣𝘶𝘴𝘪𝘯𝘦𝘴𝘴."
If you want amazing growth, you need to nail the business fundamentals through each phase of scaling the company.
Founders may dream of changing the world, a lucrative exit, and media fame, but those are ethereal without someone engaging the team, establishing systems, and measuring progress.
The dreams of billion dollar exits are realized by moving projects forward, retaining key talent, and driving performance. If this is not in your nature, then find a partner, fractional leader, or employee to carry the mantle.
While boringness can be effective in many ways, there are times when it’s detrimental.
Your vision should be ambitious. Big, audacious goals cannot be boring.
Your brand must be distinctive, and that usually does not include dull.
You want designers, developers, and salespeople who are creative and noticeable. Disruption will not thrive on tedium.
Boringness is not attractive, but it leads to desirable success. Growth relies on dull fundamentals. For every amazing vision and cutting-edge idea, you also need persistence to convert passion to progress.
The power of your ambitions depends on the ruthlessness of boring.
* The Hidden Brain podcast, “How to Change the World” can be found here: https://hiddenbrain.org/podcast/how-to-change-the-world/