It shouldn't have happened, but it did. Today, the story is told like a legend.
In 1983, John Scully was the President of Pepsi. And up until that point, the company had been his life's work. He had helped turn it into one of the world's most recognizable brands.
People noticed, and among them was a founder of a Silicon Valley startup.
At the time, this founder was grappling with a dilemma. He was driven, but he was also young and inexperienced. Nobody doubted his intellect, but the board of directors of his company wanted to hire somebody more seasoned to manage the day to day operations alongside him.
When they made the decision, the founder set his sights on Scully. He'd been impressed by the work at Pepsi. He wasn't going to take "no" for an answer.
Except, that's precisely the answer he got. More than once.
From Scully's point of view, it made sense. He was leading a great company. Why put it on the line for a startup that might not be around in five years?
He got his response in the form of a final pitch.
"Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life, or do you want to come with me and change the world?"
THE 'WHY' IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE 'WHAT'
We spend about 80,000 hours of our life at work. Yet, the work that most of us commit our lives to isn't the kind of work that we're actually inspired by.
It might be fun at times. We might set aspirations of doing more of the same thing in bigger and better ways, and that might momentarily spark a dose of excitement, but ultimately, it's just a routine of chasing moving carrots.