December 18, 2019
6 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
The following excerpt is from Debbie Allen’s book Success Is Easy. Buy it now from Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books | IndieBound or click here to buy it directly from us and SAVE 60% on this book when you use code LEAD2021 through 4/10/21.
Successful people have many of the same characteristics in common. The following are seven characteristics that highly successful people have that are critical in both business and life.
1. The disrupter mindset
Successful people passionately seek out opportunities for change or ways to disrupt their industry altogether. So, learn how to break the rules to stand out in your industry. Always look for the chance to profit from change and/or an innovative way to adjust how business is done so you can stand out and succeed. Don’t get me wrong — you need to start with a useful idea. But when you think you have one, don’t hold back. Take the core concept and turn up the disruption dial to the highest volume.
For example, Sean and Thora Dowdell are the owners and founders of Club Tattoo, a chain of tattoo studios in Arizona and Nevada. They turned the tattoo business model on its head by avoiding the unapproachable atmosphere of typical tattoo parlors. Instead, they took a high-end, modern, customer service-focused approach to the studios and retail stores, which brought the tattoo business into the mainstream and built a multimillion-dollar business for them in the process.
2. A vision for opportunity
Successful people seek out opportunities everywhere. But finding good business opportunities isn’t going to mean anything if you can’t recognize them. Recognizing good opportunities takes talent — you have to know what to look for and you need to be able to envision the future of that opportunity.
Understanding the type of opportunity you’re looking for and having a few goals in mind is crucial and will help determine which factors make it a good opportunity for you. The first step is to remain on high alert to spot opportunities while remaining ruthlessly disciplined about limiting the number of projects you pursue. Go after a tightly controlled portfolio of opportunities in different stages of business development. Link your strategy with your choice of projects rather than diluting your efforts in many areas. Make quick decisions instead of over-analyzing new ideas, and execute a plan of action.
Related: 5 Beliefs About Success That Are Going to Help You Fail
3. Shared belief system
Successful people build a great support team. One characteristic of a strong supportive team is a shared belief in the same set of values, which helps create a bond so the team works and supports one another. Shared values serve to connect team members at a core level, and this, in turn, serves to validate and strengthen their support for you as their leader. Their support continues to level up your success.
Begin to engage the energies of everyone inside and outside your organization in the pursuit of good opportunities. Successful people create and sustain powerful networks and business relationships rather than go it alone. You know how to best leverage the wisdom of experts and other resources to help achieve your goals. Business associates and joint venture partnerships can help move you miles ahead of your competitors.
4. Common business sense
Successful people have good common business sense and are always looking for ways to continue educating themselves. Developing good business sense is about continually seeking to understand the ever-changing business environment. It’s not a skill you can learn from a book. It’s something you acquire through hands-on experience and trial and error, but it can also be fostered through the wisdom of others. Brainstorming with seasoned business professionals can give you insight into how successful people with good business sense think and make decisions.
5. Motivation to learn
Successful people continue to learn throughout their lives with great enthusiasm and motivation. When you learn more about your business and successfully implement the strategies you discover, you become enthusiastic about learning even more.
Successful people become sponges to absorb anything that can help take their business to the next level. It’s almost as if they can’t get enough! Call them engaged, devoted, enthusiastic, or even obsessed — successful people believe in their mission so much that it’s contagious to everyone around them, who marvel at their commitment and dedication. This energy can fuel you to remain focused on your mission and help you persist through difficulties.
Related: Using ‘Shameless’ Self-Promotion to Grow Your Business
6. Ability to adapt
Successful people keep moving forward and adapt as needed. They’ve learned to change and reinvent their business often as the world and their industry change around them. If you fail to adapt, you’ll simply get left behind.
To keep growing, you must continuously think of ways to improve. Allow time in your busy schedule to learn new things and come up with new ideas. Successful people remain in constant motion by investing in learning because they’re eager to pursue knowledge. They understand the world is always changing, so they need to adapt to avoid getting stuck in a rut. Successful people keep moving forward and reinvent themselves when required.
7. Observant communicators
Successful people are observant communicators who pay close attention to how other people react. Communication is an activity, skill, and art that incorporates lessons across a wide spectrum of human knowledge.
One of the most likable characteristics of successful people is how observant they are. They give their full, undivided attention to others. Those who’ve mastered this are great communicators who go far in business. Successful people learn this skill by being more self-aware. Being observant requires practice to perfect.
These seven key characteristics will move you forward every day, keeping you in constant pursuit of a creative purpose that inspires you. You’re more likely to get three to 10 times more accomplished in a day than the average person because you’ll stay focused on what empowers you the most.
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