Bill Hewgley: The Right To Succeed Must Be Earned…But You Cannot Do It Alone

Wednesday, September 3, 2014 - by Bill Hewgley
Bill Hewgley
Bill Hewgley

You cannot be really successful in life without building a long-term foundation of doing the little things right, even when no one is looking. Put in simpler terms, if you do not master addition and subtraction in elementary school, you will never do calculus for NASA! Success does not come from the last leap, but rather the quality, quantity and consistency of your early steps in the right direction. I cannot stress enough the importance of making sure your children’s early years are managed correctly - this is your biggest responsibility as a parent!  Don’t handicap your kids because of the failures of your own parents to make you do your homework and chores when you should have…do it with them and explain why it is so important.

Recently, a young lady very close to me, that I respect a lot, advised me to get off the basics and move on to more sophisticated topics with more relevant guidance. I understand this tendency among younger generations to blow through the “Cliff Notes” and just get the bottom line answer required…sometimes without fully understanding the process to solve the equation. My view is that there are very few sophisticated problems in life, only complex sets of basic issues that have been allowed to grow into a proverbial “bag of fishhooks” that takes patience and resolve to untangle. There is no shortcut or easy answer to avoid getting stuck and perhaps, yourself becoming hopelessly trapped in such a mess, without methodically selecting the best next hook to remove and dealing with it in a proper manner. 

I encourage a few “sophisticated” business people to take basic training all over again.

Now that you are on your way to achieve your mission, don’t get a couple of gray hairs and start claiming that you “did it all on your own”… you were not born in a log cabin that you built yourself, nor did you walk barefoot in snow 10 miles to school, uphill both ways! Someone and Everyone helped you become successful. Just being born in or brought to America means that you benefited from our collective efforts and investments in everything from schools, to charities, to roads, to the protection of law, to the freedom to enjoy your vision of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. There are no large manufacturers or trucking companies that do not depend on “we the people” building and maintaining good roads and bridges that allow them to efficiently move goods to market. Industries of all types depend upon the steady flow of educated young people with new ideas and inventions in their heads. We all depend upon our government to defend our individual and collective freedom from all enemies, foreign or domestic. The clean water we drink, the waste that leaves your house or business each day and the very quality of the air you breathe is a result of our combined dedication to protecting our environment for the sake of all citizens. Someone does all these things and more for you, even while you sleep or play, so thank your garbage man sometimes, along with police, fire, military, plus our public teaching and service professionals. It is way too easy to blame them for our lack of responsibility in teaching & demanding good behaviors at home.

In the famous words of our Founding Fathers: “We shall all hang together, or surely, all hang separately…”


Bill Hewgley is president of Metalworking Solutions, LLC, a company he founded after retiring as president of American Manufacturing Company. One of his chief priorities is to mentor this upcoming millennial generation, while honoring those who helped him find his own way in life, by passing it on.

You can contact Bill at and visit Metalworking Solutions at


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