Be as Discreet at the End as at the Beginning; Remain Discreet Throughout the Whole Process
One should be discreet at the beginning and all the way through to finish. Many factors determine success or failure. Generally speaking, discreetness and perseverance are the sure way to success, while negligence and laxity invariably lead to failure. When approaching a successful conclusion in an undertaking, people tend to lose drive and things may fall apart at the last minute. Therefore, we must act with discreetness, a concept that has its root in earnestness. Earnestness means handling things with great care.
Some people fail when they are close to success. So, as we come to the end, we must be as discreet as at the beginning, and this will ensure success. (Laozi)
One should be discreet about undertaking his mission and give full consideration to its execution, an attitude one should take all the way, right from beginning to the end. This is the sure way to success. Being earnest and discreet, and you will succeed. Being neglectful and lax, and you will fail. (Xunzi)