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The Flywheel

No matter how dramatic the end result, good-to-great transformations never happen in one fell swoop.

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The Flywheel

Jim Collins talks about how great changes are rarely down to one big thing. It's all about consistent small steps forward. A marathon is run one step at a time not in three giant leaps.

Now suppose someone came along and asked, “What was the one big push that caused this thing to go so fast?” You wouldn’t be able to answer; it’s just a nonsensical question. Was it the first push? The second? The fifth? The hundredth? No! It was all of them added together in an overall accumulation of effort applied in a consistent direction.

There's no such thing as an overnight success.

Picture an egg, one day, the egg cracks open and out jumps a chicken! All the major magazines and newspapers jump on the event, writing feature stories—“The Transformation of Egg to Chicken!” “The Remarkable Revolution of the Egg!” “Stunning Turnaround at Egg!”—as if the egg had undergone some overnight metamorphosis, radically altering itself into a chicken. But what does it look like from the chicken’s point of view? It’s a completely different story. While the world ignored this dormant-looking egg, the chicken was evolving, growing, developing, incubating. From the chicken’s point of view, cracking the egg is simply one more step in a long chain of steps.

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