The business marketplace is filled with so-called “overnight success” stories. Because we live in a microwave society, we want everythingfast.
We want to lose weight in a weekend by taking a pill. We want todownload everything in a blink of an eye. And we certainly don’t want to wait for success.
Here are some truths about the overnight success phenomenon that youshould think about the next time you hear one of these stories.
It is the exception, not the rule.
Do you seethe with envy every time you read about an overnightsuccess story? One of the most popular is how Roxio, the makers of theapp sensation Angry Birds went from zero to hero overnight.
Yes, it was a great success story and they probably never have todevelop another game (but they will). However, the truth is Angry Birdswas the 53rd game that this company created. That would be 52 othergames that went through development, testing, marketing, implementationand lackluster sales.
Overnight success? Hardly.
Sure, a company can get fast results and see their profits soar in ashort amount of time, but for the majority of businesses success can’tbe rushed.
You’re hearing the hype.
It looks good for a company to promote themselves as an overnightsensation because we all like a winning story. It also makes for goodpress to have the Cinderella syndrome play out of someone being pluckedfrom obscurity and plopped down in their dream life.
However, a little digging will reveal the truth behind the hype. Even the simple act of filing corporation papers takes time.
The reality is that a company’s success is often built on a lot ofpast failures. Those failures might not all be related to that companybut you can bet the board of director, the developers and the salesstaff have had years of experience in the business world that lead themto this point in their careers.
In fact, if someone has worked for just five years prior to startingthat company, they are bringing close to 10,000 hours of experience. So, any time you hear a story about an overnight success just ask yourself, “What are they leaving out?”
Being number one could blow up your company.
Under the heading “be careful what you wish for” comes the notionthat a true overnight success might actually blow up your company.Imagine the potential success of a Super Bowl commercial.
Not only will literally a hundred million people see that spot playout but it could also go viral, bringing in millions of more viewers. If that business isn’t ready for the onslaught of potential customers then their website could crash, their staff will revolt and they’ll lose alot of business.
Planning for success is just that: “planning.” That should mean being ready when it finally arrives.