This Year’s Best Success Stories – Success Digest #15

The holidays are coming up, and they bring a good amount of cheer to the cold and dreary weather of the winter. Children are waiting for Santa, adults are looking forward to some time off, and there’s always some good shopping at this time of year.

this year's best success stories

As 2018 draws to a close, we take a look back at the year’s best success stories.

A Real Life Spiderman

Sometimes, a video and a headline tell you the entire story. What a brave man, and what a happy ending!

Major Tom Leaves The Earth In A Tesla

Elon Musk is like a super hero movie villain. He combined two of his enterprises, Tesla electric cars and SpaceX rocketry, when he launched a Tesla Roadster into space. The Roadster had the words “Don’t Panic” on the dashboard, a nod to Douglas Adams’ “The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy.”


Fortnite took the gaming world by storm in 2018. It boasts 8.3 million concurrent players, 200 million people who play the game, and it has garnered more than $1 billion in sales. That number is even more impressive when you know that Fortnite is free to play.

The Winter Olympics

The Winter Olympics were held in February, in Pyeongchang. Norway took home 39 medals! Hungary won its Winter Olympics medal ever. Mixed curling debuted as an Olympic sport. And Ester Ledecka, a 22 year old Czech, won gold medals in two different sports in her very first Olympics: the Super G (skiing) and the parallel slalom (snowboarding). She didn’t even own the skis she raced on – she borrowed them from giant slalom gold medal winner Mikaela Shiffrin.

The Royal Wedding

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle married in May 2018 at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle. The Royal Wedding was a spectacular success, with hundreds of millions of people around the world tuning in on TV and the internet to watch the wedding. The event went off without a hitch, and was hailed as a landmark event for the Royal Family: the wedding did not follow tradition, as it included African-American culture in the service.

Black Panther

Black Panther set records for a movie, with the biggest winter season open ever recorded. And when the dust settled, director Ryan Coogler took to Twitter. His letter read

I’m struggling to find the words to express my gratitude at this moment, but I will try.

Filmmaking is a team sport. And our team was made up [of] amazing people from all over the world who believed in this story. Deep down we all hoped that people would come to see a film about a fictional country on the continent of Africa, made up of a cast of people of African descent.

Never in a million years did we imagine that you would all come out this strong. It still humbles me to think that people care enough to spend their money and time watching our film — but to see people of all backgrounds wearing clothing that celebrates their heritage, taking pictures next to our posters with their friends and family, and sometimes dancing in the lobby of theaters — often moved me and my wife to tears.

For the people who bought out theaters, who posted on social about how lit the film would be, bragged about our awesome cast, picked out outfits to wear, and who stood in line in theaters all over the world — all before seeing even seen the film…

To the press who wrote about the film for folks who hadn’t yet seen it, and encouraged audiences to come out…

And to the young ones, who came out with their parents, with their mentors, and with their friends…

Thank you for giving our team of filmmakers the greatest gift: The opportunity to share this film, that we poured our hearts and souls into, with you.

P.S. Wakanda Forever

As Ryan shows, success is usually achieved through collaboration and a team pulling together. Here’s to his success, and to more in the future.

The World Cup

The World Cup was held in Russia, and by all accounts was a smashing success. Football did not, in the end, come home – England had a wonderful showing, but France took home the trophy after defeating Croatia in the final.

Teen Marketing Agencies

Not marketing agencies focusing on teenagers – actual marketing agencies OF teenagers. Launching a successful marketing agency is no simple task, and it is that much harder when you’re finishing up high school! Generation Z is a whole new marketing ballgame, and they’re leading the charge in learning how to market to themselves.

Cancer Zapping Nanobots

Scientists have developed a robot that attacks cancer cells. As Business Insider reported,

just figured out how to build a tiny, unfolding DNA jack-in-the-box style tumour attacker. The robot can travel through the body’s blood stream, hunting for tumours, without doing any harm to healthy cells along the way.

Successful Immigration

It sounds like a sci-fi movie – a mutant invades Europe. In this instance though, it is a brand new species of crayfish. The marbled crayfish, as a species, is only 25 years old. And the mutation is pretty wild – it reproduces asexually. In other words, it clones itself.

This marbled crayfish evolved from a species of crayfish in Florida – and it is now as far east as Japan!

Kilauea Erupts

Hawaii’s Kilauea saw its largest eruption in 200 years, starting in May and lasted for three months. It has been continuously erupting since 1983. Scientists say the volcano is currently in a lull, and don’t know what to expect next.

Hungry? Eat Plastic

In 2016, scientists discovered a plastic eating bacterium in Japan. Other scientists started to investigate this bacterium, and in their studies during 2018 accidentally improved the enzyme’s ability to digest PET (the main chemical in soft drink bottles). These scientists hope to scale their discovery to combat plastic waste: this enzyme will allow large scale plastic recycling, which will make a massive imact on environmental efforts.

The Minnesota Miracle

The Minnesota Vikings and New Orleans Saints battled ferociously in their divisional playoff game. The Saints were winning 24-23 with just 10 seconds left to the game – and then Stefon Diggs ran 61 yards for a game ending touchdown, winning the game for the Vikings and sending the radio announcer into raptures.

Flippy Flopped

CaliBurger, a restaurant in California, hired a new employee in March: a burger flipper named Flippy. Flippy the robot’s job was, as his name suggests, to flip burgers. He was fired two days later, though – Flippy was so effective, his human coworkers couldn’t keep up with him!

Hang On, I Need To Water The Liver

Scientists are growing fully functional human organs in labs. Hearts, eyes, muscle, bones, brains, and livers have all been grown in lab conditions in 2018.  Perhaps the future will see made-to-order organ replacements!