Successful people are never in step with the crowd

What do I have to do to succeed? is a common question facing young professionals who aspire to have a rewarding and successful career, and one that represents the life balance they seek.

And will this general question, there are many more ancillary ones that are posed:
  • How many degrees do I need? What academic credentials should we gather, and from which institution?
  • What courses should I take to attract potential employers?
  • Who should I hang out with to learn from and take advantage of their network?
  • Why are there so many people with amazing degrees doing jobs that are way below their academic qualifications people with postgraduate degrees doing menial work.
  • How can I climb the career ladder when there are so many other people who want the same thing?
  • With all the competition for limited opportunities, how can I get noticed and show what I am capable of?
  • I want to take on more responsibility and prove that I am worthy of a promotion: how do I get it done?
There are so many questions behind the challenge to be successful, and so many opinions on how to achieve success and heres mine.

I have seen many people with incredible academic backgrounds fail to reach their potential.

I have seen many highly skilled professionals fail to move up in an organization and achieve their career goals.

I have seen experienced managers and leaders not rewarded for their contributions.

Is Google your best friend?

And, in my view, the common denominator in all of these circumstances is the fact that most people generally tend to practise rote; they follow the established doctrine of their trade.

When approaching a challenge, they employ the toolset that everyone else uses. When facing a How should I do it? question, they go to Google for the most commonly used approach.

And they hunt for a best practice; a method that has worked for others that they hope will work in their particular circumstances. And they try to copy it.

Copying what others do has no long term redeeming value and being in-step with the crowd is a formula to define YOU as a common version of everyone in it welcome to your role as a member of a common denominator.

Join the out-of-step crowd

In my experience, I have seen success follow out-of-step people; those who reject crowd thinking and find best practices repugnant.

The key to success generally is to find a way to standout from the crowd, not join it Roy, nonconformist

People who consider a Google approach as a solution to morph to be a better fit for their particular situation.

People who are constantly asking themselves How can I do this differently than everyone else?

People who look for weird, off-the-wall methods and outcomes as an expression of their individuality.

Out-of-step people make the world an interesting place to be. And they are rewarded by receiving the recognition and reward they deserve.


My message to you: everyday when you get out of bed decide that you will do something some little thing that is different than the in-step crowd.

If you make different thinking part of your daily routine eventually it will become part of your persona and will begin to govern the outcomes you deliver.

And success will follow. I guarantee it.
Written by Roy Osing
A leading executive in Canadian business and a recognized content marketer, blogger, speaker, seminar leader, business consultant, educator and personal coach.

Roy Osing (@royosing) is a former President and CMO with over 33 years of leadership experience covering all the major business functions including business strategy, marketing, sales, customer service and people development. He is a blogger, content marketer, educator, coach, adviser and the author of the book series Be Different or Be Dead.


Leave a Reply

Make sure you fill in all mandatory fields.Required fields are marked *