10,000 Hours

Nov 9, 2016

I'm 3 and a half years deep into this thing. I watched my total work hours cross 10,000 last month. I was trying to write an honest, thoughtful post about it, but the words didn't come out right so I didn't post it.

When you hit 10,000 hours of time practicing something, you're supposed to be a master at it. If there's anything that changed when I hit that mark, I realized that I don't actually know anything.

I started this journey with a lot more ego and a lot more self-assurance. I haven't lost an ounce of confidence, but I've gained a couple doses of humility from the obstacles along the way.

There's really only one thing that I know for sure.

1 + 1 > 2

As a kid who loved math growing up, it frustrates me to see that written out, but in business, it's 100% true.

I spent so much of my journey working alone, being a bad leader, and blaming others for my faults. It was only recently that I was able to open up in the workplace and begin hiring others to help me build. Part of it was waiting until it was the right time to start growing quickly, but the other part was conquering the fear of losing control.

What I learned is that when you hire people you trust, who believe in the vision and want to build it WITH you, not FOR you, then something magical happens.

You get more than double the amount of work done that was happening before. I'm not sure why it happens, but the sum of the two parts is truly greater than the whole.

It took me 10,000 hours to learn that stupid thing, but along the way, I learned about leadership, motivation, passion, and drive. I learned that my job as a CEO is to inspire others, but also to spend time helping my employees grow. I learned that their success in life is actually more important to me than their performance in the company.

I learned that this company is my Mona Lisa and in my heart of hearts I truly believe I am its Da Vinci. This will be the most beautiful thing I have created when I am finished. Each person is a bold, bright, unique color on the canvas, and without the exact right people, the finished piece will never be remembered. My job is to find those people and put them together, so they are able to shine as one.

If I do my job right, all of those people will be able to stand with pride. The envy of the world shining upon them in their united glory.

And I'll be Tyronn Lue weeping on the bench, remembering when I thought I would be a master after 10,000 hours.