The sequence they note goes something like this: Clarity of purpose leads to success; at which point your success leads to more available options, the exploration of these options leads to a loss of clarity; which then leads to failure.
Greg McKeown, Harvard Business Review, 8 August 2012 (Hat tip: Big Picture)
Curiously, and overstating the point in order to make it, success is a catalyst for failure.
So it is another case of "less is more." All this could be loosely summed up to: "stick to your knitting".We can see this in companies that were once darlings of Wall Street, but later collapsed. In his book How the Mighty Fall, Jim Collins explored this phenomenon and found that one of the key reasons for these failures was that companies fell into "the undisciplined pursuit of more." It is true for companies and it is true for careers.
Which could be broadly expanded to a societal message about worry about what really matters. I saw the Mayor of the small town of Wake Forest the other day and teased her that now that they were discussing the option of allowing in-town bow hunting, they could pass pass their super secret conspiracy initiates with impunity while everyone was distracted.