We all want to achieve success in our lives and have a career we can feel proud of, but if you’re wondering why your dream job hasn’t landed in your lap yet, then it’s time to wake up, stop wishing, and start doing. According to Nelson Wang, a few simple behavioral changes could be all you need to launch your career. He’s worked big business, including Cisco and VMware, as well as smaller startups like Box (now a public company) and Optimizely, MTV, a small boutique law firm, and UCLA. Clearly Wang has achieved his fair share of success and seems more than qualified to offer advice. Over the years he has dutifully written a list, and here he shares his top 10 behaviors to create success at work.
1. Be Authentic
Bring your whole self to work! You'd be surprised at how many people appreciate real, meaningful connections at work. You don't need to be a corporate robot. Sheryl Sandberg has a great quote about this:
"Motivation comes from working on things we care about, but it also comes from working with people we care about, and in order to care about someone, you have to know them. You have to know what they love and hate, what they feel—not just what they think. If you want to win hearts and minds, you have to lead with your heart as well as your mind. I don’t believe we have a professional self from Mondays through Fridays and a real self the rest of the time. That kind of division probably never worked, but in today’s world it makes even less sense. … It is all professional and it is all personal, all at the very same time.”
2. Be Passionate
You care. You want to make a difference. People can hear that in your voice and see it in the way you move. And guess what? Passion is contagious. It can inspire your staff. It can make your customers your champions. It can carry you through the journey.
If you treat work like a grind, it will feel like a grind. If you're passionate about what you do and how you can make a difference, work will no longer feel like work. It'll feel like a mission. And that changes everything.
3. Be Focused
At some point, you're going to have a list of things at work that you can't get to. Instead of feeling overwhelmed and giving up, focus on what's really truly important to accomplish that day. Each day, I try to create a list of three really critical things I need to work on that can have a huge impact at work. Focus drives results.
4. Look Forward
It's easy to get caught up in your mistakes. You look back, dwell on the issues, and suddenly can't focus on the task at hand. This can have a huge impact on your present performance. Here's what I'd suggest—it's called the "10 years test." Ask yourself—is this a big issue in 10 days, 10 weeks, 10 months? What about 10 years? Will this issue matter in 10 years? About 99% of the time, the answer is no. So stop dwelling on it, lift your head up high, and look forward.
5. Own It
You're going to be successful at some things, and you'll fail at others. One of the best things you can do through it all is to own it. People will respect you for that. Why? Because you're willing to show them that you'll own it through both the good and the bad. Most people are only willing to own it when things are good. #truth
How to Win Friends and Influence People in the Digital Age by Dale Carnegie & Associates ($12)
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What other qualities or habits have you noticed in life or the workplace that you would add to this list? Tell us in the comments below.
Opening photo: Oprah.com
The Quick and Easy Way to Effective Speaking by Dale Carnegie ($7)