I like working with really successful leaders because they are driven to push themselves to greater career heights. Each has a unique definition of what success looks like to them. But typically they want more influence and responsibility, more lucrative compensation, or a greater sense of accomplishment while establishing a living legacy. They want to lead their organization or industry in a memorable, iconic way. They want to personally create an extraordinary leadership and corporate DNA imprint.
I have five rules, outlined below, to help you navigate the twists and turns as you accelerate through them to achieve your own particular kind of success, on your own terms.
Rule #1) Raise Your Own Personal Bar.
Successful leaders set the bar higher for themselves than they do for anyone else. They demand more of themselves before they expect anything from others. They have faith in their leadership capability, and ability to be an ideal role model who strengthens the success DNA of their organization. Instead of getting bogged-down as perfectionists scared of failure, they focus on forward momentum, energetic motivation, and measurable progress – with strategically-calculated risk.
Rule #2) Become the CEO of their Career Destiny.
You’re the leader. People now view you as their role model, and that can take some getting used to. But act the part and cultivate that mindset and you’ll be fine. Take personal responsibility. Always be accountable. Shift into gear quickly despite setbacks and disappointments. Harvard Business Review cited a study that showed that nearly half of all CEO candidates made a serious career misstep – but nearly 80 percent of those who “failed” later become the CEO. Develop desirable leadership DNA that will proliferate as team/department/corporate DNA.
Rule #3) Embrace the lifelong journey.
A “I know it all” attitude can stop your career momentum, by killing your sense of gratitude and withering your ability to empathize. Don’t get me wrong. Bold confidence is healthy. But if you lack curiosity and don’t stay hungry for knowledge, it weakens leadership DNA. Highly successful people know that they have never “arrived” or reached the top of their summit in terms of ultimate potential. Instead the more they grow and learn, the closer they get to learning something new and branching out to grow in another dynamic and fresh direction.
Rule #4) Demonstrate Leadership Character
Although they may teach a few hours of ethics classes in MBA programs, not even the Harvard Business School can teach character. Your integrity, honesty, and trustworthiness elevate you above other leaders who lack those priceless traits. Leadership success comes from your ability to relate to others in a way that adds value to their lives, as you set a stellar and steadfast example for how to live your life, both personally and professionally.
Rule#5) Master the Art of Mindset Management
Engage in a ritual practice of applying positive mindset mastery techniques to yourself. Every hour of every day monitor and manage your thinking. Expand your vision, be more positive and solution-oriented, and eliminate the negative chatter in your head. That will give you the authentic, genuine leadership charisma people seek when they need a quick jolt of inspiration and motivation to deliver their best possible work.
If you practice these five “rules of the road” you’ll rule your career with leadership success. The benefits will become part of your essential DNA, and have a powerful impact on others.