1.Perseverance: We all face challenges. The average American will change jobs 8-9 times in their career. The true measure of a person’s worth is defined by their ability to overcome adversity.
“There is no education like adversity.”
– Benjamin Disraeli
2. Natural curiosity: the pursuit of lifelong learning is a critical attribute when times change with the degree of rapidity we are experiencing in today’s turbulent world. You should always be looking to increase your skills by pursuing accreditations and certifications, learning a new software program or another language. Curiosity manifests itself in being a voracious reader, and in general having a natural curiosity towards the way things work, and how people operate (being a closet sociologist.)
3. Playing politics: understanding how to navigate the turbulent waters of today’s workplace is critical for long-term survival and success. We’ve all heard ad nauseum that very little of our success can be contributed to the actual work. It’s how we play the “game” that matters. Even if you hate doing that, it is important your learn how to do it well.
5. Having a moral compass: it is especially critical for small business owners to realize that their personal values and belief system are synonymous with their organization culture. Being able to match your personal values to an organization’s is the most critical factor in ensuring one’s job satisfaction. An entire emerging industry is growing around the ideal of promoting the social good. In the age of Enron, Bernie Madoff, Goldman Sachs, AIG, Lehman Brothers, and BP, what you represent is fast becoming more relevant than the products or services you offer.
6. Social extrovert: being liked goes a very long way towards building broad social and professional networks. Do people gravitate towards you or literally run from you?
7. Established personal brand: have you asked yourself: “what do I really stand for?” What is your unique selling proposition? What are the three or four key characteristics that most clearly define who you are and what you hope to accomplish?
8. Lean into discomfort: There are things we are mortified of doing, like public speaking for example. Being able overcome our fears is an absolute must, in order to ensure success in today’s global contract workplace. Research indicates that as many as 25% of all American workers are now classified as independent / contract / consulting. With jobs becoming more difficult to find/keep, people will be forced into opportunities that require them to go at it alone.
“Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.”
– Dale Carnegie