It is often said that if you work hard, you will become successful. There are those who would go so far as to say the people who are not successful simply have not worked hard enough. Although no one would dispute the value of hard work, it is not true that it will not always lead to success. Many hard working people have died penniless.
In fact, there have been many hard working people who have contributed great ideas that changed our society but were never rewarded for their labor and creativity. Examples of this are men such as Eli Whitney. He invented the cotton gin, but was never able to enforce a patent and made little money from his work.
The opposite end of the spectrum of wealth and labor are those who did nothing and were richly rewarded. Most of these situations revolve around the golden parachute. This is compensation that is guaranteed for many incompetent corporate executives when they leave a company.
Source: Business MBA – B-school Rankings