Not too long ago, I was talking to a friend at work who was expressing his gratitude for the place we were at by saying something along the lines of
I feel so lucky to be at Company X. They took a chance on me and this job changed my life - I owe it all to them.
This friend wasn't wrong to be thinking this way, but I also felt like he was missing a really important part of this puzzle. It reminded me of a story, which I told him, and which now I am telling to you. It goes something like this.
A few years ago, I bought a really nice bike. It was a really light road bike with an aluminum frame, and it just felt fast. I started riding it to work every day, and every day I would get to the office with a ride-induced smile on my face.
One day, I was chatting with my boss at the time, himself a cyclist, and he mentioned something about my new bike. "I love it," I said, "it's just so fast." He looked at me, nodded his head appreciatively, and said in a sage tone:
It's probably your legs.
It wasn't until later that I actually thought about what he was saying in a broader context, and I decided that I really liked it. It wasn't this new fancy bike, it wasn't the equipment that I had that was making me go faster - it was me. I was strong, and probably made stronger after fighting my old beater bike for as long as I did. So while the bike definitely helped me go faster, at the end of the day it was my legs.
At the risk of belaboring my point, don't forget that at the end of the day it's you pushing. Being on a certain team or at a certain company may give you an opportunity to shine, it's true - but at the end of the day nobody can lay claim to your achievements but you.