The 10 Universal Skills Essential To A Successful Career

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Although it is a common cliché, success really doesn’t happen overnight. (Although we wish it did!) Success is something that is slowly developed and worked for over time. So in order to make your big break, there are ten universal skills that should be mastered. Without further ado:

1. Develop passion.

Many professionals find themselves working in positions that were offered to them, not necessarily ones that they felt passionate about. Without this emotional attachment to your work, the quality of your product can be negatively affected. So find something you truly love and stick with it.

2. Be organized.

Although working in a cramped cubicle is a recipe for clutter, it can also lead to losing important material and even forgetting about deadlines. Keeping your workspace clean and creating a list of work-related priorities can help you breeze through simple tasks and tackle those that are more difficult.

3. Stay focused.

When challenges arise, it can be easy to avoid attempts at tackling the situation. Or when your to-do list seems longer than your grocery list, you may find yourself jumping from one item to another without fully committing to it or finishing it. So instead of avoiding certain tasks or becoming overwhelmed by how much you have to do, make small goals and tackle one at a time in order to narrow your focus and enhance your work product.

4. Communicate effectively.

Developing professional communication skills is essential in all business settings. From confronting a co-worker about an issue, to pitching a new idea to your boss, you want to make sure that you express yourself clearly and in a manner that is reflective of your thoughts. This will ensure that your message will be received well by others and will enhance your chances of a successful outcome.

5. Think Critically.

When inevitable problems or challenges arise, you may be tempted to hand the problem off to someone else. However, developing critical thinking skills that allow for a broadened perspective and added creativity will allow you to successfully navigate troubling situations. Not to mention, it will also give you an opportunity to learn and demonstrates your smarts to your boss.

6. Be a team player.

Most professional settings require working as a member of a team and collaborating with others. However, working with others can be tricky, especially when conflicting goals or points of view prevent work production. In order to improve your team member status, connect with others in order to better understand their work and communication styles.

7. Stay positive.

When the going gets tough, remain optimistic! There is a saying, “You are never given challenges that you cannot overcome.” Challenges are not roadblocks. Rather they teach you important lessons or help you develop necessary skills. Remembering this during trying situations and staying positive will provide you with the ability to turn negatives into positives that will further your professional growth.

8. Maintain motivation.

If you want something, then make it happen despite the obstacles that may get in your way. By staying focused on your goals, making consistent efforts and remaining determined, success will not be far off. Moments that test your motivation are oftentimes the same moments that will offer opportunity.

9. Take risks.

One of my favorite quotes is, “If you want big rewards then you have to take big risks.” Even if failure is possible, you will never know if you are going to succeed unless you try. So shoot for the stars because you may have a million dollar idea. Think big and do big.

10. Develop self-confidence.

If you believe in yourself, this perception will be adopted by others. In other words, they will see you the way you see yourself. So get your shine on and be the person that you want to be. Not only will this persona actually come to fruition, but you will also gain the confidence needed to believe in your ideas and make them a reality.

Mastering these ten universal skills will undoubtedly enhance your professional and personal life. But perhaps most importantly, if used correctly and creatively, they can lead you on a path to leadership or entrepreneurship and allow you to create a career that you’ve always wanted.