We are going to discuss factors that you can consider to achieve success in your career and avoid mistakes made by most people. These factors are compiled from seasoned and successful people who have made it in their jobs of their choice. Lets look at them as follows:
- Take responsibility for your career – Don’t depend on your company for everything. Gone are the days when people spend their lifetime working for one company and relying on a pension and social security. Have an internal locus of control: you are in charge of your career and your life. Design your own career, because if you don’t others will.
- Work by design, not by default – Decide what direction you want to go from the start, then begin moving in that direction today. Don’t let inertia and circumstances dictate which direction your career goes.
- Know yourself – Decide what you want out of life, then do your research, find out which career tend to bring people the most money, happiness, fulfillment or whatever you are looking for. Then examine yourself. Do you have what it takes, based on your test scores, strengths and weaknesses, personality and willingness to put in whatever effort is required of you. Talk to people who have achieved what you want to achieve, to see if it brought them the rewards you’re expecting.
- Have the right frame of mind that serves you – Success comes easy with the right frames of mind, mental attitudes that color how you think about things. Be optimistic: Expect great things to happen, be enthusiastic about the path you are on, have abundance mentality, act with confidence, show appreciation, and make your work fun.
- Have a career aligned with who you are or want to become – Your values should guide you in a career choice. If you value Honesty, Integrity, Justice, factor that in your career choice. If you ever want to make a positive impact on the world, do something that helps others. Whatever course you take be guided by authenticity, be who you are at the core.
- Decide what a career is for – Your career should be aligned with who you are at a fundamental level no less than any other aspect of your life is. You should aim at maximizing happiness, pleasure and meaning while working and at play in your life. In a nutshell, figure out what you want out of life and then figure out what role your career can play in making it happen.
- Be guided by your passions – Find a career on something you are passionate about. Share your passion with the world as you cultivate it. Note that the most successful people tend to be the ones who are passionate about what they work on.
- Have a healthy attitude towards money – Don’t let money dictate the direction your career goes. You can fore-go money for skills now, then get the high paying job in future but not the other way round. Think long-term and take more intelligent risks.
- Think Big – The higher you aim, the more you’ll achieve, even if you don’t hit your mark. Don’t be too quick to settle for less than what you want. The system will occasionally present you with the opportunity to sell out and take money now in exchange for selling a piece of your dream. Always resist this temptation. The best way to think big is to be guided by passion, authenticity and optimism, not money.
- Set smart goals – Dreams without action, is nothing. You will need structure and discipline to have the career you want. Intelligent goal setting is an essential step. Have achievable goals. Work with a sense of urgency and monitor your progress, to make sure you are moving in the direction of your goals. Don’t be satisfied with things staying the same. Try to make everything in your life better than before. Have your goals written down, with deadlines and if possible make them quantifiable.
You can also read: Common Mistakes Job Seekers Make.
- Learn – You need to learn in order to succeed in your career. Talk to successful people in your desired field and ask what skills helped them succeed and how they developed those skills. When learning focus on skills development and transformation of mind and character.
- Focus – Focus on the activities that will propel your career in the direction you want to take it. Simplify, prioritize, delegate, do whatever it takes to focus on what really matters.
- Be open – Flexibility is essential to career success and comes in different forms. Be open to different view points, this is the fastest way to learn. Be open to working independently and as a member of a team. Be open to change, since the world keeps changing so quick that those people who can’t adapt get left behind and lastly be open to trying different tasks at work.
- Get motivated – Don’t look for motivation from your employer or your boss, but be internally motivated. The most successful people in business and life are the ones who push themselves rather than waiting for someone to push them. Motivation is easier when you are passionate about what you are doing, and when you have clear goals and a clear idea of why you want to achieve those goals. This will give you the energy you need to keep moving forward in good and bad times.
- Lastly, be less afraid – Fear takes on many forms in careers in life, and many of them are counterproductive. Fear of making mistakes leads to a perfectionism that reduces productivity and stifles creativity. Fear of criticism keeps people from speaking up and sharing their ideas. Fear of failure holds people back from even trying. Move out of your comfort zone. Move towards challenges and not away from them.