The 7 things successful people always do

Oct 2012
Reference: Forbes

It is difficult to pin down what makes up a successful person, but they do have some key interpersonal skills that make them stand out from the rest. Here are seven things that successful people almost always do: 

1. They receive feedback, good and bad, with grace.
Successful people know how to take a compliment without making the giver feel silly, but perhaps more crucially, they receive constructive feedback as a vital part of their growth. Whatever ideas a person has they are often improved by other opinions or by other people trying to break them. Successful people view criticism as a way to be better at what they do.

2. They ask questions
Successful people are often genuinely interested in other people and want to learn as much as they can about them. So they ask questions. It takes a confident person to think of pertinent questions to ask someone else, particularly when the two don’t know each other that well, but it also demonstrates a modesty and humility that shows they value the experiences of someone other than themselves.

3. They listen carefully
They also listen carefully to the answers, often being able to remember details of conversations that most of us forget – probably because we weren’t really listening. That simple act of listening properly is deeply respectful and enables them to build strong relationships with those people that they value and respect.

4. They maintain relationships
Due to their highly developed listening skills they retain key information about individuals, which enables them to check in occasionally with those contacts that are important to them with something interesting. They may hear something good through a network about a contact and they will bother to congratulate them. As such their network remains strong and they have a large pool of people to call on should they need them.

5. They don’t whine
Successful people rarely moan about the situation they find themselves in. They either focus on finding a way out of it or they ask for help. A key to success is recognising that asking for help is not sign of weakness. You have a support network for a reason, so use it. Don’t whine.

6. They offer help
If they see an opportunity to help someone, they offer their services. They are confident in their knowledge and their resourcefulness and they are willing to share what they know. Regardless of your position in a company or the size of your salary you should be asking others how you can help them. You can often offer a new perspective on someone else’s issues; it will make you realise you are capable of more than you previously thought; you’ll feel good about yourself and the good you do will come back to you one day.

7. They confirm and manage expectations
Successful people rarely charge headlong into something without making sure they have understood the requirements and nailed down the details. They are confident enough to ask “is this want you wanted?” and they clarify points to ensure everyone is on the same page. They manage expectations along the way too, which means they rarely under-deliver. Asking the right questions upfront and keeping people posted on progress ensures you are on the right path and avoids wasting time and annoying clients or bosses.

Regardless of your position in your company or your success to date these traits can make a big difference to what you get out of your life, network and career. Success is an attitude and it can be learned.