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Paying Your Dues: Are You Willing to Do What It Takes to Get There?

This article, written by Ron Thomas and featured on, discusses how success takes time, patience, and quite a bit of hard knocks. Far from the idea of overnight success, this article points out how very strange and winding the road to achievement can be, particularly to someone who expects that corner office right away. Thomas relates the story of his daughter to help illustrate the power of “paying your dues”: someone who wakes up early and stays late, but because of it is able to climb up to the position of directing and leading projects. It wasn’t easy, he explains, but it was worth it. His daughter had a plan, which is a rarity for lots of people who dream big: I’m surprised that all these smart people for the most part have absolutely no plan. They have a destination but no means or thought of getting there. If they do have a plan, it is very vague. You have to have a plan and you have to have another plan called Plan B. The journey starts out, and so many times when you come to that fork, it may take you in a different direction. Think of the people that started in one direction and end up going a totally different way. Thomas goes on to give some advice about how to plan your work (and then work that plan), as well as the notable example of the new CEO of Yahoo who started as a dancer but became “sidetracked”. All in all, the lesson coming from the article is that hard work might make someone think that they are getting nowhere, but in fact they are paying the dues necessary to get to the next stage of their careers.

About Matthew Kabik

Matthew Kabik is the former Editor of Computer Aid’s Accelerating IT Success. He worked at Computer Aid, Inc. from 2008 to 2014 in the Harrisburg offices, where he was a copywriter, swordsman, social media consultant, and trainer before moving into editorial.

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