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And yet, the luckiest among us appear especially unlikely to appreciate our good fortune.According to the Pew Research Center, people in higher income brackets are much more likely than those with lower incomes to say that individuals get rich primarily because they work hard.the term hindsight bias to describe our tendency to think, after the fact, that an event was predictable even when it wasn’t.This bias operates with particular force for unusually successful outcomes.
Happily, though, when people are prompted to reflect on their good fortune, they become much more willing to contribute to the common good.
Other surveys bear this out: Wealthy people overwhelmingly attribute their own success to hard work rather than to factors like luck or being in the right place at the right time.
That’s troubling, because a growing body of evidence suggests that seeing ourselves as self-made—rather than as talented, hardworking, and lucky—leads us to be less generous and public-spirited.
What were the odds of being seated at that dinner next to that Salomon Brothers lady? My case illustrates how success is always rationalized.
Of landing inside the best Wall Street firm to write the story of the age? People really don’t like to hear success explained away as luck—especially successful people.