How to Grow Your Grit

I recently learned about the passing of my company’s founder, Art Gensler. The stories I heard from colleagues showed how passionate he was about the industry and about people. A fellow administrator on the West Coast told me he would make a point at large company social events to sit with and get to know the administrators at his firm. This isn’t something every leader at a company this size would do.

As I reflected on Art’s passing I was reminded of what I learned from reading his book, Art’s Principles (before my first interview) about resiliency and grit. He said to be resilient you have to be calm and mindful – even after a mistake. The ultimate keys to resiliency are to accept, to adapt, and to advance.

  • Accept that you lost an opportunity or made a mistake.
  • Adapt to your new circumstances.
  • Advance in tough times.

I also learned a lot about leadership, honesty, generosity, and the Power of Design. Another gritty person I follow, Angela Duckworth, wrote the book on grit and talks about how grit is not enough, that you need to be well-rounded (like Art) to be successful.

Read more here: Grit is the key to success, but not without one vital characteristic (

This Talking Tuesday is recommended by: Michelle Cicotte

Published by Dallas Society for Design Administration

We are an elite organization that advances management and administrative professionals in the A/E/C industry through education, networking, and resources. SDA Membership provides: Career/Industry Credibility A “home” for administrative leaders Access to the greater A/E/C Community Increased profession and industry passion Advancing A/E/C Firms from Within For over 60 years, the SDA has been providing accredited education, best management practices, and training on professional standards to help design firm personnel grow professionally. Our membership stretches across the United States and Canada and is composed of personnel in the architecture, engineering, construction, landscape, and interior design professions.

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