Can This 1 Thing Predict a Successful Career?

People are always searching for the secrets to being successful. For example, what qualities made President Obama, Oprah Winfrey, and Tory Burch the successes that they are today? According to a new article on The Observer, one thing and one thing only is the most significant predictor of success.

What is it? Your network—but it’s not just any network that makes one successful. It has be an open network. The story goes on to explain that a large open network is one where you are the link between people from different clusters: “People in open networks have unique challenges and opportunities. Because they’re part of multiple groups, they have unique relationships, experiences, and knowledge that other people in their groups don’t.”

Being in an open network (rather than a closed one where you are connected to people who already know each other) is crucial to success, because it provides a more accurate view of the world and allows you to control the timing of sharing information. You are the connector between the groups, and you’ll have more breakthrough ideas.

The author, Michael Simmons, looks at Steve Jobs’s life as the ultimate example. He points to a Jobs quote that illustrates the importance of having an open network: “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”

Learn more about Steve Jobs life by reading his biography.

Do you think having an open network makes you more successful?