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Ambitious professionals often spend much time thinking about strategies that will enable them to reach greater levels of success. But, despite their accomplishments, they still lack a true sense of professional fulfillment and are often deeply frustrated with their careers.
The question to ask is not how to reach the top, but rather to take a personal look at how you define success, and then finding your path to get there.
To define success for yourself, you must take a step back and reassess your career. It starts with acknowledging that managing it is your responsibility.
Taking control requires you to take a fresh look at your behaviour in three areas:
Taking responsibility for your career starts with an accurate assessment of your current skills.
It isn't easy to succeed if you don't excel at the tasks that are central to your chosen field.
Many executives can't identify the three of four main activities that lead to success in their business. The ability to identify critical tasks helps you determine how to spend your time and develop your skills.
Character and leadership often separate the good performance from the great performance.
One measure of character is the degree to which you put the interests of your company and colleagues ahead of your own. Excellent leaders coach and mentor. They will make recommendations to benefit the company, even if the actions may not be in their own short-term interest. They are willing to speak up and realize they can hit a plateau by playing it safe.
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There are two ways in which leaders develop their personal styles:
If you lack a skill, you'll lack ability. If you have a zero anywhere in your equation, no amount of strengths will make up for it.
For instance, in Business, you will need Sales/Marketi...
To go from zero to 80% (good enough) requires a different approach than that needed to get from 80% - 99% (world-class). The last 20% also requires a different level of commitment. For instance, Stephen King spent 6 - 8 hours daily for ten years before he succeeded as a commercial writer.
The gains disproportionately accrue to people at the top. Stephen King probably sells more books than the rest of his category combined.
Being good at many things probably means that you are at 80% of your potential in all of them. It is not enough to stand out.
Pick a very few things to tackle through the 10,000-hour rule and try and reach 99% of your potential in them.
Every field has its standards. Once you’ve got the basics down, reach for a lesser known—but still needed at your office—skill or competency.
Don’t create unnecessary conflict with your co-workers, but don’t run from it, either. See it as an opportunity to better understand someone you’ll be spending 40 hours a week around.
Chances are, the other person will respond the same way. Goodwill is taken for granted less often than you might think.
At first, asking for help might sound like the opposite of creating your own opportunities.
Opportunities are tied to personal relationships. Consider the Ben Franklin effect: By asking someone for a small favor, you endear them to yourself. The reason is that, when you help someone, your brain rationalizes your actions by assuming that you must like that person.