Years ago I came across a brief list in the Investor’s Business Daily titled Ten Secrets to Success. It resonated, so I cut it out, laminated it and pinned it to my bulletin board as a reminder, a refresher course in how to think about life, not just in business, but personally as well. It has been on my board for decades and its veracity has never wavered. Except for number ten they rank in no particular order.
1. How you think is everything: Always be positive. Think success, not failure. Beware of a negative environment.
2. Decide upon your true dreams and goals: Write down your specific goals and develop a plan to reach them.
3. Take action: Goals are nothing without action. Don’t be afraid to get started. Just do it.
4. Never stop learning: Go back to school or read books. Get training and acquire skills.
5. Be persistent and work hard: Success is a marathon, not a sprint. Never give up.
6. Learn to analyze details: Get all the facts, all the input. Learn from your mistakes.
7. Focus your time and money: Don’t let other people or things distract you.
8. Don’t be afraid to innovate: Be different: Following the herd is a sure way to mediocrity.
9. Deal and communicate with people effectively: No person is an island. Learn to understand and motivate others.
10. Be honest and dependable; take responsibility: Otherwise, Nos. 1- 9 won’t matter.
Consistently acting on this advice is a challenge. Sometimes life just gets in the way and it takes incredible will to stay on course; remaining true to your beliefs. I decided to include the list here on the Greater Impact Foundation blog because it occurred to me that the challenges faced by for-profit social enterprises striving for success under extremely difficult conditions demands a reserve of energy and reinforcement unlike what one might find in a stable home and business. Remaining true to one’s beliefs is that much harder. These ten tenets resonate as much, if not more, for those who often operate in unforgiving environments where seemingly insurmountable obstacles are commonplace and there is no such thing as a level playing field. Without structure, without great people, without a vision and a plan, success remains elusive. Combined with the muscle of these tenets success feels more within one’s grasp.
These tenets have served me well, but I am sure that there are others to add. I would love to hear our readers’ thoughts. Join the dialogue.