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Success is No Accident

By Randy Gilmore, Marching Show Concepts, Inc. First printed in Fanfare, Volume 21, Issue 1, August 2006. Reprinted by permission.

Success is no accident. It’s easy to forget that successful people don’t start out that way. They start out ordinary, but with a dream, a plan and some goals. With their dream, plan, and goals in mind, they make 1% improvements daily. Gradually, days slip into weeks, weeks slip into months, and months slip into years. Eventually, the dream grows and becomes reality. What begins as ordinary is transformed into something greater because of the first, and most powerful, step taken. Formulating and meditating on dreams, plans, and goals sets the stage for future gains. This first step ensures ultimate success can be attained.

Successful people dare to dream and imagine the results they desire. They spend time thinking, imagining, and planning to dramatically increase their level of awareness. With that higher level of awareness, they make better choices. With better choices come better results. If we want to improve ourselves and our situations, we must do the inner work necessary to increase our awareness of what we want to achieve. This awareness then serves to guide and improve our choices. As stated, good choices open the door to improvement and success.

This path is not, however, the path of least resistance. Discouragement can easily derail our best intentions. Life is full of disappointments, rejection, and a seemingly endless stream of challenges. In reality, this is simply life’s way of helping us grow and test our commitment. We must remember that the greatest wins always appear after the biggest tests. Always.

Too often we postpone success by spending more time hoping our career will attain world-class dimensions rather than taking action today to move the dream forward. Seemingly little distractions clamor for our attention and we neglect to engage in those small steady movements that, over time, amount to giant gains and spectacular wins. We fail to see that our days are our lives in miniature. As we live our days, so will our lives be.

A single decision made today can change your future; alter your course completely; and help you see a whole new world. The life you now see does not have to be the life you have in a year, or two years, or in a decade. You can change it all with a decision today. It may be a decision to get fit, a decision to be more disciplined, or a decision to be a source of positive energy and inspiration to everyone you meet. Make a decision to show leadership rather than play the victim. Conquer your fears. Make a decision to shine. See it in your mind and go for it.

Achieving success and getting to your “best” requires that you make a decision and passionately take bold strides toward your goal. No great human being reaches his or her mountaintop just by hoping it will happen. Hope is important, but you must add focus, persistence and, above all else, action to see special things happen. Success in the big or small things never happens by accident. Begin your quest on purpose – today.

Randy Gilmore served ten years as a nationally recognized high school band director and assistant marching band director at West Chester University. Over the past 21 years Randy has developed Marching Show Concepts ( as a nationally known company for quality marching band products and exceptional one-to-one services. Randy exemplifies an expertise and standard of excellence that is well known and respected throughout the music industry. He is an accomplished clinician, adjudicator and drill designer who continues to display his talents in the MSC collection of products and services.