I'm a one-trick pony and my trick is my persistence.<...>
That sentence might sound way simpler and more humble than I intend for it to sound, but the core of the message is spot-on: If I could singly out only one thing that I think has contributed most to my success, it's my persistence in most things that I pursue.
When I use the word "persistence", I'm sure most of you conjure up thoughts of stamina, endurance and a long period of time.
But that's not how I view persistence. Persistence is a diligent, conscious ritual and discipline. Persistence is sometimes as simple as just remembering to follow up on a loose end.
If I look at my daily job as a founder, I spend so much time following up with people (who for whatever reason hasn't responded to me). I follow up with team members, customers, prospects and partners. I follow up, because I need to ensure that the shit that will move the needle gets done. Simple.
I use a modified version of Ryan Carson's Trello-based To Do List, where I have an additional column titled "Done /w Followup". That's essentially my cue and reminder that the only thing I can do to complete those tasks is to follow-up with the other party until they get back to me (with further actions or confirmation that the task is completed).
The reality is that our fates aren't completely in our own hands; we need other people to ultimately do the things they're supposed to do, which in turn helps us make progress on our things.
The thing you can control though is your persistence to follow-up until shit gets done.