Necessary Isn’t Sufficient

Silver bullets rarely exist.


“These are the 3 traits that make people successful!”

A headline template we’re all bombarded with daily.

Diving into the success stories and hunting for the universal key is natural, common and usually entertaining.

But it’s also misleading. Drastically misleading.

Because many people (including most writers of headlines like the one above) mistake the necessary things for sufficient ones. Hard work is necessary for business success. Without hard work, you’ll fail. But does hard work guarantee business success? Of course not.

Hard work is necessary. But it isn’t sufficient.

The problem is that the necessary things are a lot easier to observe. The sufficient things are not — because, most of the time, they are the result of a combination of things.

So what do we need for business success?

  • Skills? Necessary.
  • Timing? Necessary.
  • Resilience? Necessary.
  • Hard work? Necessary.
  • Good Ideas? Necessary.

Are skills only enough? No.

So having skills can’t be sufficient.

And good ideas only? Nope.

Hard work only? Also not sufficient.

Understanding this nuance not only sharpens our analytical skills but also deepens our appreciation for the multifaceted nature of success.

It's a reminder that while certain elements are indispensable, they are just a part of a broader mosaic of factors.

Silver bullets rarely exist.

Here are 3 other concepts you might benefit from: