Success is defined as ‘the accomplishment of an aim or purpose’ and for many people it can come in different forms and can mean a multitude of things.
Success can be a continuous cycle, a small project, at work or a personal goal. The way you get there and the attitude you maintain along the way can be adapted to anything you do or want from your future.
This blog will explore some of the ways to aid success and how to apply them to your role, taken from both my own and others experiences.
So what does success look like at work?
Is it passion or taking risks? Is it the people you work with or the power of authority? Or is it the satisfaction of making money, whether it be your income or profit?
What is stopping you from being successful?
I have heard from some others about the ‘dread’ of going to work and it surprises me that there are so many people out there that are not doing what makes them happy!
Perhaps it is down to a role that has no work/ life balance or can be a bit monotonous at times? For many of us, there are commitments to fulfil, bills to pay, putting a roof over our heads or even the cost of children to consider, but that does not mean you should settle for less than what you deserve!
If only it could be clearer to see the rewards and new opportunities that can be gained when going that extra mile or taking a risk – That doesn’t necessarily mean a career change, you just need to find a way to enjoy your job, to be involved and challenge yourself everyday.
'Work to live or live to work' … What would you choose?
I once worked in a role that couldn’t offer career progression or the support and challenges I felt I needed. I was unhappy for several years and was scared to make a change so I just accepted it. One day I made the decision to take a leap no matter the consequences - I wanted change, I wanted a career, I wanted to become skilled and challenged in a sector that I was interested in and with a lot of determination and hard work I eventually landed on my feet and it was worth it.
I now work for a successful company in a division that recruits into one of the largest local authorities for temporary administration, Business Support and Education.
Every day I see candidates of all levels working their way through the stepping stones of new assignments, learning new skills and gaining experience. In some cases they even land a permanent role if the opportunity arises. Seeing this happen is what makes my job one of the most satisfying I have ever had- to be part of that progression and knowing you are making a difference to someone's life is amazing!
From experiencing and witnessing this development, it proves that working hard and pushing yourself to be better, or at the very least having the right work ethic and attitude to do well, will reward you along the way.
That’s not to say that it won't be hard and you may even feel like your whole career has fallen apart at times, but you have to keep thinking of the long term end goal and force yourself to eventually get there!
Here are a few traits of successful people that I think are important to apply in the workplace:
1. Love what you do!
First and foremost, if you are working in a role that you do not enjoy, you need to ask yourself why and how you can fix this.
Can you ask for more responsibility or input to new ideas?
Can you help with training or project planning?
Can you work on building better relationships internally or externally?
If you can’t learn to love your job, what’s the next step that is right for you?
Professionalism, positivity and the way you present yourself is vital to a successful career. First impressions are everything but the way you maintain that image is even more important.
An open mind and acceptance for change will help you work successfully too. Don't get left behind, times are always moving!
Ultimately, you have the power to change the way you react to situations - your reaction can have a huge impact on others so stop and think how your reaction can trigger other’s behaviour – whether that be positive or negative.
3. Find your drive
The best way to channel all your drive into a role is to discover what motivates you and use that to fuel your career. Your motivation could be job security, progression, passion, money or something completely different.
Once you have identified this, think of your end goal and create mini personal goals to help you get there. Not only does this keep you motivated, but it can also incorporate the fun back into your role!
Goals can be as big or small as you want -such as learning a new skill, whether that be communication or self-management, setting a time goal for certain tasks or setting figure targets.
Knowledge is powerful and is a stepping stone for career progression and personal growth. There should never be a point in your career where you stop learning.
Everyone starts off with little or no knowledge at all in their role, but it only takes your time and focus to build on this.
Knowledge can be asking questions, taking on training, reading learning documents, browsing the internet or just simply searching for news and information online.
Think of the most successful person you know and remember that they too started from little or nothing!
Your job is yours to own and understand. Much the same as learning something new, your job will take time to settle into and will take patience to learn all that there is to know - from there you should continue to learn and grow.
The more love and attention you give your job, the more your job will reward you in return.
Taking a few hours out of your own time to brush up on your knowledge or work towards a qualification or additional personal training can make you stand out from your colleagues.
6. Initiative & proactivity
Having the core skills to complete a job is not always enough, sometimes you need to use your own initiative to put those skills to better use. The ideal candidate will think ahead - move ideas forward and influence others in a positive way.
In a workplace, you must stay productive and resourceful.
If you find you’ve completed everything expected of you, try to anticipate any upcoming tasks or offer help to others. By completing a task early, you benefit the business and your own workload.
There is always something you can be doing – whether it’s cleansing data, filing, helping others, making calls, tidying up, learning something new, updating your knowledge – there is no excuse to be doing nothing.
Before you leave the office, finish up your tasks and plan your workload for the following day - this can be the difference between a manageable day tomorrow or starting on the back foot.
Always be reliable. You want to be the person that people turn to naturally - this is something that is earned over time through trust and respect. Be on time, up-to-date with relevant information, follow through on a promise, be supportive and stop to listen and help where you can.
“Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life” - Confucius
The above points are only guidelines, but can be used as a good starting point for anyone looking to advance their career and be more successful at work. Good luck!
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