Learning to Fly and Dissertations

This month in 1903, Wilbur and Orville Wright executed the first sustained, controlled, and powered heavier-than-air manned flight. Here’s how they got there first, and how you should do the same thing for your dissertation…

The Wright Brothers weren’t the only folks hoping to take to the air in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Of their various competitors, perhaps Samuel Pierpont Langley was the closest.

Langley started by by building an ultra-light glider to which he later attached the most powerful light engine of his day. The resulting combination was a complete disaster, with the engine quite literally ripping the plane apart.

The Wright Brothers, on the other hand, were much more careful about planning their design. They actually built a wind tunnel to measure lift and drag. They tested more than 200 wing designs. By the time they actually assembled their machine for its first flight, they were confident in its success…as confident as anyone could be when doing something for the first time in history, anyway.

And, that’s exactly what you want to do for your dissertation, as well. Don’t try to put together the best this with the best that with the best the other. You’ll work too hard on each piece and still not know whether they fit together!

Instead, simply find a project that’s feasible. Something that will work. You don’t need all of the parts to be the best at what they do. Hell, you don’t even need each part to be “good.” What you need is the final dissertation to be good enough.

And, luckily for you, completing your dissertation is a far easier challenge than the one the Wright Brothers faced. In their case, no one had ever done it before. They had no way of knowing what might work without testing everything themselves…which is why they tested over 200 different wing designs.

But, in your situation, lots of people have done it before. It’s much easier to figure out what works and just emulate that. There are also folks with real experience who can answer your questions or guide and support you.

If you feel like you just can’t get yoru dissertaiton off the ground on your own, click here to schedule a quick, 15-minute chat with me to see if you’re a good fit for our Fast Track Your Dissertation Coaching Program. If you are, then I’ll invite you to join the fastest group of dissertation students out there and help you to reach graduation a good year or two faster than you would on your own.

If you need extra support and guidance to make it to graduation, I may be able to help. If you'd like to find out whether you qualify for the support we offer throughout the dissertation process, then...

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Dr. Russell W. Strickland

RUSSELL STRICKLAND, Ph.D., has been referred to as a “rocket scientist turned management consultant.” In truth, he applies an eclectic body of work from astronomy and nuclear physics to dynamic inventory management to market research to each of his student engagements.

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