What Does It Take To Be Successful?

By Alan Olsen

What is the key to success in business? What is the key to success in life? Is there really one key to success? The answer is no. There are a lot of different keys to success in anything you do. The fact is the key to success will differ for most people depending on their circumstances. I have asked this question to many successful business owners and operators, as well as entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, and they all have different takes on what has led to their success in both business and in life. Recently I discussed with Jeff Hayzlett, the CEO of Hayzlett Group about his take on success.


Crawl, Walk, Run

For Jeff, it really all comes down to taking that first step. After that you just continue to put one foot in front of the other until you reach where you want to be. “It’s not that difficult. It’s just taking one step at a time. It’s like the first time I did Celebrity Apprentice someone said ‘how’d you get on the show?’ I said ‘well I called Donald Trump.’ ‘Well how did you do that, why would you do that? I said ‘well I picked up the phone, called 411 got the information called and left a message;’ I mean it literally is that simple.” Jeff explained that he has a philosophy he lives by and it’s all about starting with baby steps: crawl, walk and then run. “That’s really what we do in life from the time we’re a little child all the way till the time we die. We crawl we walk we run.”


Success Comes One Step at a Time

Jeff explained that in everything we do for the first time we always start as a beginner. For example, he said you don’t just become a maestro without playing a lot of bad notes first. So it’s always that first step. “It’s that first plank on the piano or that first strum of the violin. It’s that very first time. That’s what it takes for you to pick it up and do it.”


You Have to Be Relentless

Jeff also explained that the victory doesn’t go to lucky people, it’s the relentless that win. “In my career I’m not the smartest and I’m not the brightest guy, I’m not the quickest guy…I wasn’t born with a silver spoon or a lot of money but I’ve been extremely successful with what I’ve been able to do mostly by just being relentless.” In other words, you have to decide what you want to do and then determine that you are going to get that done without taking no for an answer. There is always the possibility of a setback or failure for a period of time but you can’t give up. You have to stick to your guns and be relentless.

To see my interview with Jeff Hayzlett, click here