The Difference Between the Successful and Unsuccessful

“The difference between successful and unsuccessful people is successful people do all the things unsuccessful people don’t want to do…when an opportunity presents itself. It is those who take action—time after time—that finally succeed, regardless of the adversity that presents itself. Lori Ann LaRocco breaks down these differences nicely in her book, Opportunity Knocking.” —John Paul Dejoria, CEO & Co-Founder John Paul Mitchell Systems and CEO Patrón Spirits Company

When author’s write books they seek out endorsements. Even if you know the person it’s a little nerve-wracking. John Paul is a contact and business leader I have admired for years. His personal story is compelling living in a car for a year while trying to sell his John Paul Mitchell Systems products to salons. His determination, passion and belief in his products and himself got himself through a very rough time.  When he found out I was writing “Opportunity Knocking” he wanted to read the book.  I was excited at the chance to have a successful self-made leader read my book. But to be honest I was a little nervous.  Writing a strategy, inspirational book is a personal process especially when you are writing about your own thoughts and beliefs. There is no curtain separating you from the reader. You are all out there. It’s not like you are writing a fictional character that you can hide behind.  I am a journalist and I love the thought process of leaders. What makes them tick. How similar they are to you and me.

When John Paul wrote an endorsement, his thoughts leaped off the page for me. He hit the main topic that I hammered on throughout the book. Hard work.  That’s the glue that solidifies the Opportunity Pyramid together.

pyramid pic

You have to want it so bad you are willing to work your butt off.  You want to be the best you can be,  you take an honest look at yourself: you strengthen what you are good at and you try to better yourself when it comes to your weaknesses. You learn as much as you can and when you set your sights on your goal you stick with your game plan.  Your passion and drive keeps you going in times of hardship, disappointment and jealousy when things come easier for others and you are breaking your back trying to get where you want to go. Finally, you reach your goal. YOUR world domination. But I can tell you from my interactions with leaders like Alan Mulally of Ford, the three founders of BlogHer to private equity titans Ralph Schlosstein of Evercore Partners and David Rubenstein of The Carlyle Group- just because they are at the top of their game doesn’t mean they are complacent.  They are constantly asking themselves how will they continue to better themselves? How will they continue to raise the bar and remain relevant.?

Being the best you can be is a journey that you continue to fine tune. It never stops. When you look back at yourself say 10 or even 20 years from now you want to see how you’ve grown.  I equate it to going back to your high school reunions. There are those who peaked in high school- forever stuck remembering times of old and have not done anything with their life and then you have those who have made their mark in the world, living in the present. Were they the most popular in high school? Who knows, but they are the success stories of today and tomorrow. They never got complacent.

The way you live your life is your decision. The perception and energy you bring out in your job is in your hands. The question is how hard do you want to work?

Please order a hard copy or Kindle version of my book Opportunity Knocking Lessons from Business Leaders. 


Author: loriannlarocco

I am the author of "Dynasties of the Sea: The Untold Stories of teh Postwar Shipping Pioneers", "Opportunity Knocking: Lessons from Business Leaders", "Thriving in the New Economy" and "Dynasties of the Sea: The Shipowners and Financiers Who Expanded the Era of Free Trade". I'm also the Senior Talent Producer at CNBC, and known as the producer with the trillion dollar Rolodex

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