One of my favorite quotes is, “What got you here won’t get you there.” It’s from Marshall Goldsmith – #1 Leadership Thinker, #1 Executive Coach and NYT Bestseller. When it comes to achieving greater success in your career, it couldn’t be more true.
This is why I’m always seeking to learn from others. The bar keeps rising and I need to develop those next level skills and improve in other areas if I’m to achieve my goals. And learning from others speeds up your progress.
Whatever goal you’ve set for yourself this year – whether it’s to get promoted, to ask for (and get!) a pay rise, to be seen and respected as a leader, to be more productive, or some other goal – one of the best things you can do is to seize opportunities where you can tap into the wisdom and experience of those who have been there and done it (and bought the t-shirt!).
What I love about what I do is that I get to speak with highly accomplished people, and then share their insights with you so you, too, can realize your full potential. (You’re welcome!)
I recently had the opportunity to speak with a number of highly accomplished people who shared their best tips, strategies and insights on achieving greater success. I’ll be sharing those with you this month.
But one thing struck me in those conversations.
Not a single person mentioned technical skills.
Being good at your job is not enough
It’s not that technical skills aren’t important. Of course, we want our lawyers, surgeons and executives to be highly-skilled and experts in their fields.
But if you want to rise higher in your career, have opportunities to lead exciting projects, and be singled out for promotion, then technical skills are necessary but insufficient.
Beyond the early stages of your career, your technical skills simply won’t differentiate you anymore. Plus, they won’t help you in the rest of your life outside of work.
Just think of the people you work with. How many of them are as good as, or maybe even better than, you? If getting chosen to lead a major project, for example, came down to simply how technically good you are compared to those around you, would you be chosen?
So, if being good at your job isn’t enough, then what does matter?
The skills that matter most in advancing your career
It’s all about your qualitative skills and abilities. Some refer to it as “soft skills”. Others think of it as “interpersonal skills” or “emotional intelligence”. Still others see it as the “messy stuff” where there’s no single right answer.
Whatever you label it, in my experience, these higher-level career success skills tend to cluster around three areas:
- Your ability to interact with people,
- Your ability to manage your self, and
- Your ability to advance the business of your organization.
If you’re not the most technically skilled person in your department or organization but you have better “soft skills” than others, then the chances of getting more opportunities to advance your career can increase.
To help you figure out where you need to pay more attention, and maybe do some work, here are some questions to think about:
How you interact with People:
- Do you know how to build a network of trusted relationships and leverage your connections?
- Have you found a powerful sponsor to elevate your career opportunities?
- Can you influence people to say “yes” to your ideas?
- Are you a leader that others want to follow?
How you manage your Self:
- Are you able to project confidence?
- Do you show resilience in the face of stress?
- To what extent can you remain calm under pressure?
- How well do you set and achieve goals?
- Are you able to disconnect from work when it’s time to relax and rejuvenate?
- How productive are you, day in and day out?
How you advance the Business:
- Do you come up with creative solutions?
- Are you able to prioritize the activities that matter most?
- Does top management see you as entrepreneurial in your approach?
- Do you make decisions that result in action?
- How have you shown your business acumen in times of change?
And, of course, there are the broader questions:
- Are you living a life of purpose and impact?
- Are you approaching your work and life in a way that’s aligned with who you are and who you want to become?
Notice how none of those have anything to do with how proficient you are with spreadsheets, how many hours you put in, how late you work, or how skilled you are with technical details.
As you assess where you stand in these areas, don’t worry if you come up short on some, or even many, fronts. You can equip yourself with these skills for this journey that is your career (and indeed your life).
An opportunity to learn these skills from the best
So, coming back to those highly accomplished people that I spoke with, who shared their best tips, strategies and insights on achieving greater success. How would you like to learn from them, too?
What would it mean to you to start the year strong by learning from people who’ve been there and done it, and learned the hard lessons already so you don’t have to?
And best of all, to learn from them for free?
Well, you can!
This is my annual virtual Summit where you get actionable tips and advice from world-class experts I’ve gathered together to help you get ahead in your career this year.
Thousands of people have participated over the last five years, and their feedback is that this is a fantastic way to start the new year. There’s potential for you to reap big rewards.
Here are just some of the many topics covered during the Summit:
- How to find great mentors and sponsors
- How to give the very best advice as a leader
- How to make better decisions
- How to get people to say “yes!” to your ideas
- How to say “no” gracefully
- How to unlock the value of your network
- How to overcome age discrimination
- How to make your self-introduction stand out
- How to get more done in the time you have
- How to build a thrilling life and career
- How to deliver amazing business results
- How to progress more quickly in your career
- How to set yourself up to achieve your potential
- How to avoid getting stuck in your career
- and more
This is a fantastic way to start the new year and there’s potential for you to reap big rewards, just as so many past participants have experienced. By the end of the Summit, you’ll be more focused, confident and effective in advancing your career.
So, if you have BIG goals for 2018, then join me and my guest speakers because this could change your life.
So, which of the three areas – interacting with people, managing your self, and advancing the business of your organization – do you need to improve?
Leave a comment and let me know.
Then make sure to register for Career Mastery™ Kickstart 2018 and let’s get your career off to a great start this year and make 2018 your best year ever!