Consider This

Robert Stevenson’s Thoughts on the Pursuit of Excellence

The Destructive Attitude of Arrogance

September 10, 2023

by Robert Stevenson

One of the biggest destructive forces today that causes countless large companies to fail is an ATTITUDE of ARROGANCE. Bill Gates said, “Success is a lousy teacher. It seduces smart people into thinking they can’t lose.” Couple that statement with one from former Intel Chairman Andy Grove, who said, “Only the paranoid survive. Paranoids believe someone or some force is out to get them,” and now you should have a better perspective on how two enormously successful men remained successful in such competitive, turbulent times.

I think it is extremely important to be confident but not arrogant. I find arrogant people to be resistant to evaluation and challenges, have a false sense of invincibility, and are especially close-minded to listening to what others might suggest.

The business landscape is littered with powerful companies who thought they were invincible only to find they were vulnerable to smaller, more nimble companies. Success teaches us that if we keep doing the same thing, the same way, we will keep being successful. That might work “until” your competition starts following everything you do to the letter, then it is time for you to raise the bar. You shouldn’t fear your competition, but you should certainly respect them.

Feeling COZY in business is deadly. Don’t ever forget someone is always after your market share and is willing to do new and different things to get it.

Understand you have to prove yourself every day: you might have beat out your competitor yesterday, but never lose sight of the fact that your competition is now regrouping and getting ready to come at you again. They are rethinking their weak points as well as searching for yours. They are putting together a NEW GAME PLAN to beat you, so you better not relax. You better be reloading, preparing, tweaking, and improving because “THEY” are.

Realize your only true security in life is...

your ability to perform better than your competition
your desire to improve, learn and study
your persistence to constantly keep moving forward
your consistency in delivering more than is expected
your focusing on the most important matters

Over-confidence (arrogance) destroys even the best of the best. So, explore failures to understand what happened, acknowledge weaknesses, seek advice from others, welcome suggestions, and stay humble. Understand, if you keep doing what you’ve always done … you will be gone.

Create a culture of humble respect
for your success
and be forever mindful
that each day
you must prove yourself again.

"Your only true security in life
is your ability to perform."

About the Author

Robert Stevenson is an expert at building a high-performance business culture, improving efficiency, and accelerating growth. He is one of the most widely sought-after speakers in the world today, as well as a best-selling author. He has owned five companies, sold internationally in over 20 countries. Robert has spoken to over 2,500 companies throughout the world and his research in the area of corporate and entrepreneurial success is extensive. Over 2 million people have benefitted from his powerful, practical, and thought-provoking programs. He is a true master at blending facts, inspiration, conviction, and humor into all his programs.

Companies like FedEx, Prudential, Lockheed Martin, Chevron, American Express, and Berkshire Hathaway continue to rely on him for a fresh, unique perspective on businesses’ most crucial issues. To learn more about Robert and what he can do for your team visit his website at

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