Entrepreneurial Project Management

Guerrilla tips and tactics for getting things done

What’s Your Secret Magic?

Posted by matteverard on June 28, 2006

I’ve recently read a story to my kids from The Magic Treehouse series where Jack and Annie, brother and sister, find (what else?) a magic treehouse that transports them back in time so that they can save the day over and over again. In The Night of the Magician Jack and Annie meet up with four of the “new magicians” at the World’s Fair in Paris, 1889, at the top of the Eiffel Tower. The kids have to discover the “new magicians” secrets before an evil magician comes to steal away their knowledge. When Louis Pastuer, Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison, and Eiffel are asked “What is your secret magic?” they scratch their heads and respond.

Eiffel: My secret is that I have a taste for adventure and a love of work and responsibility.
Pastuer: Chance favors the prepared mind.
Bell: When one door closes, another opens.
Edison: Genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.

After each man gives their “secret” the others nod and clap in appreciation. I found myself resonating with each of these perspectives, perhaps especially Eiffel’s. I love challenging projects, love to learn, and have a passion to build things that matter.

As Joel Spolsky said, there are two things that matter most when evaluating a candidate: aptitude and passion. People with aptitude can learn new things and are immensly valuable in a host of situations. People with passion get things done.


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