During a recent TED Talk, psychologist Angela Lee Duckworth said that while intelligence matters, a high IQ is not the greatest predictor of success.
Rather, the key is to have grit, or determination — the willingness to push through even when the odds are against you.
Watch Duckworth’s short lecture, and then we’ll keep going:
OK, so grit matters more than any other talent or trait. That means a great deal for your career, especially in these top cities for job-seeking Millennials. Which means it’s time to start asking yourself some hard questions.
Do YOU Have Grit When…
You apply to 10 jobs and get no response? Can you find the motivation to keep firing off resumes until someone answers?
You send off a job application and want to make sure it was received? Do you ask via email or phone call, and do you refuse to let up until you get a response?
You sit down to write yet another cover letter? Do you have the discipline to make sure it’s tailored to the particular job — even though all that writing is tedious and a giant pain?
You prepare for a job interview? That means knowing the four questions to ask an employer and taking the time to research the company beforehand.
You have no energy, after a draining day of work, to attend a networking event? Do you dig deep and go anyway because you never know who you’ll meet?
You wrap up a networking situation? Grit means you take time to write a thank you note, even if someone only connects you from one person to another. (Use these templates to get started.)
You get passed over for a promotion? Gritty people then work twice as hard, rather than checking out mentally or looking for a new gig.
You realize you lack certain skills? Do you voluntarily teach yourself what you need, even if it won’t result in a raise or bonus?
You start a side hustle? Here are nine reasons why you should stick with it.
You hit a low point and life doesn’t seem to be working out? As Duckworth said, all the smarts in the world won’t save you. Your best weapon is a heavy dose of determination.