Every day, gifted and talented people fail because they aren’t good at dealing with other people. I just finished a conversation with a CEO who has a creative director who’s dedicated and talented – but he just can’t get along with anyone. He alienates everyone, and as a result, people won’t listen to his ideas. No matter how great your thinking is, if you can’t communicate it to people who can help make it happen, then you’re heading toward failure. Social skills matter – especially in today’s digital, connected world. I see it in Hollywood everyday. Even in the entertainment industry, where it sometimes seems being a jerk is mandatory, movie stars, celebrities, producers and directors, and more fail because they’re unable to relate to the very people who can help them the most.
For a generation who’s grown up looking at screens rather than people – this is an important lesson. Learn to get along with people. Learn to express your ideas with passion and grace. Those social connections will ramp up your success far more quickly than simply relying on the power of your ideas alone.