Wise advice for career success in 2017

Wise advice for career success in 2017

Let’s slow down and reflect on how to make positive progress in our career success in 2017.

And I have the answer.

I was driving into Melbourne last week, overwhelmed with a sense of foreboding and impending doom. A number of minor setbacks had knocked the wind out of my confidence and mojo. I was in a funk. Lost in a tsunami of fear, pessimism, defeatism, catastrophising.

Then I saw the Johnnie Walker billboard. It gave me the answer to getting back in control and tackling 2017 with hope and optimism. This is what it said:

The most important step is your next. Keep walking.

So simple. So true. Think hard about what your very best next step needs to be for 2017. What is the most important step you can take to tackle an issue, or accelerate towards your goals? Then, set a date, and take action.

Here are four ideas on how to make sure you get this done, brilliantly:

1. Career Success: Begin with the end in mind

It’s one of Steven Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, and it works. Dammit — it works! Here’s how to use it.

  • Determine what you are striving to achieve in the first 60 days — have a vivid image of it
  • Write down that outcome, in the past tense, as if you’ve achieved it
  • Write down the date you want to be able to say this
  • Brainstorm a long list of everything you need to do to achieve that result
  • Develop a plan — phase the work based on priorities
  • Get started immediately on that first step.

2. Set manageable, short-term targets along the way

Set manageable targets: step-by-step goals within our reach. When you accomplish goals, you gain confidence and momentum. In this way, you give yourself regular ‘wins’ along the way, and inspire yourself to keep going. Progress, no matter how small, is to be applauded. Success is, after all, just the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out. Take that very first step of progress.

3. Just Do It! (But there’s a twist. Read on!)

Fitness guru Michelle Bridges gives this advice: In motivating her clients to exercise, her approach is this: when you wake up at 6am for your run, and it’s dark and cold and you’re convincing yourself to get back into bed, don’t. Instead, just do it, and make this deal with yourself: commit to exercising for 10 minutes. If after that time you still don’t feel like doing it, then return home and put the kettle on. That’s the deal. Just do it — for 10 minutes. Once you start, and get 10 minutes under the belt, you’re on a roll, and you’ll keep going. Guaranteed!

4. Done is better than perfect

Take action! Get stuff ‘done’ and move on. Some take the view:

Don’t let “good” be the enemy of great.

In other words, go the extra yard and make sure anything you do is as good as you can do it. But I prefer this:

Don’t let the search for perfection be the enemy of the good.

Sometimes you have to say:

Enough already – wrap it up, move on.

Whether it’s an email you’re writing, an article you’re editing, a change you’re trying to drive through: whatever. It is easy to get stuck on something, fine-tuning and striving for perfection. As General George S. Patton said:

A good plan, violently executed now, is better than a perfect plan next week.

So, in summary, the most important step is your next

Begin with the end in mind. Set short term, manageable goals. Get started — just do it! And remember — done is better than perfect. Give it a try — and I know 2017 will be a year with very positive, fast progress and career success for you!


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