As told by Lucy Kellaway: (emphasis mine)

The first and most important is luck – yet it never gets a look-in in books on the subject. You need to be as wildly successful as Warren Buffett to admit that the biggest thing he did right was being born white and male in the US at that particular time. Most successful people have had big lucky breaks at birth and a succession of smaller ones thereafter.

The second law is ambition. Everyone who I have met who has been successful in business has really, really wanted that success. From this wild desire almost everything else that you need flows – hard work, thick skin and ruthlessness. Otherwise I can only think of one other thing that is vital to success, at least in some lines of business: good looks. If you are an Anglo-Saxon businessman it is fine to be (fairly) ugly. But if, like Money Honey, you are female and want to make it on television, beauty is essential.

Ain't it the truth.

And on a related note (I read a lot of random crap), I ran into this article which tied your name to your attractiveness. The most attractive names? Ryan and Sophie. Don't think I've met a Sophie yet...

Posted by roy on March 29, 2010 at 10:38 PM in Ramblings | 3 Comments

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Comment posted on March 30th, 2010 at 09:24 PM
hi, my name is ryhan.

sanjuro (guest)

Comment posted on March 30th, 2010 at 04:17 AM
Oh yeah, one more thing, I knew a Sophie at school: she was a tall, loud-mouthed, tomboyish brat. So perhaps that name-to-attractiveness rule works only in anglo-saxon countries. :D

sanjuro (guest)

Comment posted on March 30th, 2010 at 04:10 AM
It might have helped too that Buffett was born in a wealthy family. His father was already a successful businessman as well as a politician. A form of nepotism is still running strong. There's plenty of people who were born white American males, I doubt their overall career achievement is significant enough to make a rule of success of it. But yeah, I definitely agree on the importance of luck. Another good example of that is Bill Gates.

Hmm, but Oprah Winfrey isn't beautiful. Neither is Rosie O'Donnell. And they're quite successful on US TV I believe. I think the law of ambition, and relentless hardwork, is much truer. As they say in movies: you have to give up everything for fame! Take Lady Gaga for instance, she's not particularly pretty but she has a good voice, and most importantly she started early and worked really hard to get where she is. And now that she has achieved her goal, that she has attained celebrity status, she's still working hard on keeping it. No coincidence her first album was called The Fame. That probably was her very goal since childhood.