Intangible Qualities For Success


Whether you are starting out in a new job or trying to get your career on track, the fundamentals of success are always the same. Time and time again, certain traits help you get to the next level — and the next after that. But what are these traits that separate two people of equal skill? Or that allow the seemingly less qualified to rise above those who have it all together in the intelligence department?

If you don’t think this happens, pause for a moment and think. You can probably come up with at least one person who arrived at the office with an academic reputation that was second-to-none, but failed to impress as much as his background would seem to indicate.

Brains account for a lot, but they are not everything. If you have reached a certain level of your intelligence or if you are trying to rise above others of greater skill, you need to take into account the intangibles of success.

Broad perspective
I once discussed a software development issue with a programmer: While he was concerned about the efficiency of the code, which would not have become an issue for months, I was concerned about getting it to work as soon as possible because it was a show stopper for the rest of the business.

What do you see when you look at a problem, specifically a problem that seems to have no obvious solution? Do you feel a rush of anxiety or do you try to look at it in the context of everything else and determine how important it really is?

Those who want to be successful have to learn to determine between matters of greater importance and matters of lesser importance. Making a big deal out of everything will only serve to work you up and leave you racing to catch up on the issues that truly matter. Successful people learn to get the work done on time and iron out the flaws later.
Vested interest in the company
Does the company you work for really matter to you? I’m talking about the devotion that comes through when you talk about your work with friends and family. Or the devotion that you feel when you are deciding if putting in those extra hours will make a difference to the company.

As a manager, knowing that the members of my team have an interest in the well-being of the company means that I can give them greater autonomy to work on their own. Even without my constant supervision, they will work for the good of the company. Employees with a vested interest are seen by their superiors as people with a passion for what they do; this attitude tends to garner rewards.

If you want to guarantee your success, increase your pain threshold and be accountable for your actions High tolerance for punishment

The greatest lesson that I have learned about success is that if you are given more work than others, you shouldn’t feel wronged because of it. It may take a while to understand this concept, but the idea is that taking on more work gives you more responsibility. Your reaction to the additional responsibilities is part of what determines your success.

Many people are inclined to look at a heavy workload and try to figure out ways to cut corners and skirt their responsibilities until just before review time; however, those who are diligent will pick up the slack and strive for even more.

It is important not to become discouraged by criticism or obstacles along the way. It may be a sign to work harder; perseverance yields rewards.

Ownership and accountability
What does an assignment mean to you? Do you just go through the motions or do you seek to fulfill a role? The truth is that each job you do is more than a set of tasks. If you can see it as such and complete all the auxiliary functions related to it, you might find yourself enjoying newfound authority.

The idea of ownership is to perform a certain function within the company so well that it becomes your domain of expertise. When you slip up, you must take responsibility for your mistakes and rectify them so that they are not repeated.

Follow through on all your commitments, no matter how small they may be. Small acts such as this will make a difference when it comes time to promoting the impression that you are on top of things.

You can’t be a leader if you are afraid. Being a confident leader is more than simply knowing when you should speak up; it also involves backing up your position with credible and concrete sources. You do not want to become a weak leader that argues for the sake of arguing.

Many times, I have had to encourage young employees to voice their concerns or to take the lead in a discussion when I can see that they are itching to say something. Though I respect their thoughts and ideas, I also expect them to be validated.

Whether your boss agrees with you or not, speaking out when things are contrary to your views can earn you the respect of your superiors and peers. They will rest more peacefully knowing that they can count on you to speak up when things aren’t being done the right way.

Employees who sit back and expect things to be handed to them could end up waiting a long time. Seize opportunities as they are given to you. Don’t wait for a promotion; instead, work toward it and make sure that your boss is aware that you are hungry. Do not, however, act rashly, boldly or with arrogance.

Declare your ambitions through your actions and with the quality of your work and your extra effort. Don’t just ask for it — earn it. Make things easier for your boss by winning the right to take on those additional responsibilities that are up for grabs.

Keep in mind that your boss’ job is to look after the business and that your happiness is a secondary issue unless it affects the business. Make yourself crucial to the company and lay claim to the opportunity of your dreams.

practice the basics
Succeeding takes time and effort; we have all noticed that it comes more easily to some people than to others. It is the intangibles that set them apart.

These fundamental philosophies or principles, when put into practice, could be the difference between a career of mediocrity and one bursting with accomplishment.

By Correspondent Samuel Hui

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