I confess. When I grew up my heroes played baseball, basketball and football. I spent hours trying to make my pitch look like Don Drysdale’s or my jump shot look like Jerry West’s or Oscar Robertson’s. At the time there was only one quarterback who was about my height. His name was George Mira.
I also grew up reading biographies. I started with heroes in history. At 13 I read Clarence Darrow’s autobiography. Later I read about top lawyers going all the way back to Earl Rogers who defended Darrow in Los Angeles, and whose daughter wrote Final Verdict about her father. You can read about Rogers in this Tennessee Bar Association Blog Post: The Triumph and Tragedy of Earl Rogers.
I wanted to discover common themes and see if I could follow them. I still have several lawyer biographies in my bookcase even today. I wrote and gave links to several of those books six years ago: Recommended Reading: Are you reading about the great ones?
Forbes posted an article a few years ago about a book titled: The Art of Doing: How Superachievers Do What They Do and How They Do It So Well.
Here is the list:
- Dedication to a Vision
- Intelligent Persistence
- Fostering A Community
- Listening and Remaining Open
- Good Storytelling
- Testing Ideas in the Market
- Managing Emotions
- Constantly Evolving
- Practicing Patience
- Pursuing Happiness
If you want a different perspective, years ago I read an article titled: Becoming A Super Achiever: The Requirements of Success by Thomas D. Meyerhoeffer and George Vasu. (It apparently is no longer available on line.) They listed 10 strategies. Which of these 10 do you believe apply to super achiever lawyers?
- Stay Physically Fit for Life
- Confidence and Courage
- Persist Until You Achieve
- Respect Everybody
- The Ultimate Team Player
- The Relentless Pursuit of Excellence
- Take Personal Responsibility
- The Three C’s of Power Speaking
- Study the Masters
Look at both lists. Ask yourself which of those in each list you are doing.
One final thing: Read Seth Godin’s blog (you should subscribe if you haven’t. Years ago he posted: Are you a scientist? After reading, ask yourself whether you are a scientist or an analyst. To be the best, you need to become a scientist.