Unless you win the lottery or have a trust fund, you will likely need to work to earn a living (at least until you achieve financial independence). Hopefully, you are able to find a career you enjoy as a means of earning a wage. Irrespective of the career you choose, there are four simple rules which will guarantee you career success throughout your professional life.
There four simple rules to guarantee career success are:
- Do what you say you are going to do
- Ask for help from others when you need it
- Provide help to others when you are able
- Be nice
Do what you say you are going to do. This means get it done, and get it done on time. The world is filled with procrastinators and people who overcommit. Being able to accomplish the end results you commit to gains you credibility and professional respect. Anyone can make a promise, but only a professional can consistently deliver action. If your boss can always count on you to get the job done, they will be more likely to provide you with raises and other incentives to retain your talent.
Ask for help from others when you need it. Some mistakenly believe asking for help is a sign of weakness. The truth is it is a sign of strength, because it displays you are confident enough in your own abilities and limitations to recognize when you need assistance. Asking for help from others will also contribute to achieving rule number one, because you can utilize the help provided to meet your deadlines and goals. The secret to this rule is not to abuse it out of laziness, because that will just anger others. Decent people are willing to help others when they know the request for help is genuine.
Provide help to others when you are able. Working with others is a two-way street of give and take. Be generous with the giving and judicious with the taking. This rule supports rule number two, because people will always want to help those who have helped them. Don’t keep score; it is perfectly fine if you end up giving more help than you receive, as long as you aren’t being taken advantage of. Helping others will always garner respect from your subordinates, peers, and superiors.
Lastly, be nice. Be nice to everyone. If you are nice to people, then they are more likely to be nice to you in return. Beyond being a decent way to treat others, you never know who may one day be in a position to help you when you are in need. Good workplaces, and successful organizations, are usually filled with nice people. A “toxic” workplace is often the way it is because of one or more people who can’t be nice. Many decisions regarding promotions and terminations are based upon interpersonal factors, such as how the employee interacts with his or her co-workers. It will always help you to be nice.
These four rules for professional success are simple, yet many people in the workforce struggle with at least one of them. Remember, professional success is the means to achieving financial independence. Consistently follow these four rules and you will always enjoy professional success throughout your career.