I have a love-love-hate relationship with the concept of work ethic. First, the obvious – without it, success is impossible. Let me say that again – success, mastery, breakthroughs – they all require a great, dedicated, dead-serious work ethic. (That’s the love-love part of the relationship).
Here’s the hate part. Work ethic alone does not guarantee success. Many people work very hard only to see their plant closed, their company go bankrupt… So – work ethic does not guarantee genuine success. But a poor work ethic practically comes close to guaranteeing failure.
Anyway, here are a few lines from Daniel Pink’s Drive to reinforce the “have a good work ethic” rule.
“Grit” – “perseverance and passion and long-term goals.” (the #1 predictor of success at West Point). In every field, grit may be as essential as talent to high accomplishment.
“Effort means you care about something, and you are willing to work for it.” (Carol Dweck).
“Being a professional is doing the things you love to do on the days you don’t feel like doing them.” (Julius Erving).