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The Best Career Advice From Successful People Who Made It to the Top

The Best Career Advice From Successful People Who Made It to the Top
From Recruiter - August 23, 2016

Article by Bruce Harpham

To build a successful career, you have todraw on several important disciplines. These time-honored practices, proven to work in every industry, are vital to the achievement of success. Whether you need inspiration to start a new practice or somemotivation to get back on your career track, you canuse these four leaders experiences to bolster your own.

1. Self-Knowledge Is the Foundation

Without self-knowledge, the pursuit of success is frustrating. In the ancient world, philosophers encouraged their followers to reflect. Todays leaders use their self-understanding to define and reach success.

- At several points, my mentors have served as a mirror for me and helped me to understand myself better, says Kim Ulmer, regional president of Royal Bank of Canada. Ulmers responsibilities include managing more than 170 branches and 3,000 staffers.

- Dave Kasabian, chief marketing officer at Tagetik, a management software company, says, My philosophy of growth is to look inside myself: What do I enjoy? What are my skills and passions? Based on that knowledge, I make decisions on how to develop.

-Assessment tools provide helpful insights into understanding our strengths. For exampleauthor and entrepreneur Michael Hyatt, referred to the bookStrengthsFinder 2.0, a personal development favorite, when heexited a corporate career to start a new chapter as an entrepreneur. His strengths, according to the model, included a focus on achievement and the future.

Self-knowledge requires reflecting on your experiences, good and bad. Think about last week and take note of when you felt the greatest satisfaction. You might take greater satisfaction from solving thorny business problems, or you might relish the challenge of guiding a new graduate through their first few months at work.

2. Curiosity Is Powerful

An open and curious mind is vital to making the most of learning opportunities. Curiosity means looking for opportunities to learn and to apply new ideas outside of the classroom. Engagement and focus areincrediblypowerfulin leadership roles because your actions and words will quietly influence many around you.

- I usually take one or two courses per year at a business school to keep my skills sharp, says Rich Crawford, CEO of Global Integrated Services.

- I have a thirst for knowledge and regularly go out to meet with business owners to understand their situation, Ulmer says. Recently, I found David Zingers 10 Principles of Engagementand have found that to be a helpful resource. It has encouraged [reflecting] on my work several times per day to see if I am truly engaged.

- One of the most valuable books Ive read in my career is Peter Druckers The Effective Executive, says Ben Sawa, director of marketing at GEI Consultants Inc., one of the largest engineering firms in the U.S.

- Entertainment executive Brian Grazerproducer of Apollo 13, The Da Vinci Code, and J. Edgar attributes much of his professional success to curiosity and learning from those around him, all of which he describes in his book, A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life.

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