To invent a product, turn a profit or start a business is to be accomplished. To be successful is to maintain ethics, principles and self-awareness regardless of how your professional pursuits are going, and it is the latter to which we should strive.
“Successful people,” as we’ll call them here, are defined largely by their willingness to lean into difficulty and transform it, rather than avoid it or cast blame. Some of their most consistent and outstanding traits involve being individuals who see opportunity in challenge, and who strategize in the face of crisis whereas others only react emotionally. They understand the value of being good over being “right,” and are always willing to grow.
Interestingly, these individuals aren’t always the most visible individuals in their workplace – and even if they are, they would be the last to applaud their own self-development. What we can learn from them is that life will consistently present different circumstances to which we control how we respond. If we can garnish from those situations wisdom, patience and potential, we can yolk the true essence of a leader, which is to see change and growth where others see crisis.
Here, some of the most difficult things that highly successful people learn to do early on.
1. Admit fault.
Highly successful people understand that the sooner they can acknowledge a mistake, the sooner they can take action to rectify it. Getting past the ego-block of denying wrongdoing not only holds them back further, it looks like a poor display of character.
2. Value being good over being right.
Successful people are never the smartest person in the room. To achieve this, they forfeit the need to always be right with the commitment to always do better. Their goal is not to be the best, but to create something that is the best, in collaboration with those capable of making that happen.
3. Maintain humility.
To be humble is to see oneself as whole and human, rather than defined by a few standout achievements or circumstances. It is to stay connected to others, whereas some use their success as a way to disconnect and disassociate, positioning themselves as “better than” someone else.
4. Communicate with precision.
The value of a good communicator cannot be understated, but to speak with precision is to find and use the correct combination of diction and tone to express an idea as clearly as possible. This requires clarity of thought, and the objective to convey ideas, rather than elicit emotional responses like awe, pity or intimidation.
5. Embrace failure as a process, not a finality.
Those who fear failure – and subsequently avoid risk – tend to see it as a permanent mark against one’s character or reputation. In reality, failure and success is an ongoing process, and the former almost always has to precede the latter.
6. Not exaggerate or conflate issues.
Anyone can make an issue more complicated than it needs to be, and in fact, most people do. It takes true genius – and a touch of tact – to simplify them.
7. Conserve willpower.
It is not our time that is limited in a day, it is our energy. More specifically, it is our willpower that we run out of if we are required to use it for too long. This is why many highly successful people streamline or automate a lot of their day-to-day decision making about things like outfits or meal prep, so they can conserve their focus for when it really matters.
8. Meet judgment with understanding.
It is easy to become defensive when someone makes a snap judgment or derogatory mark about yourself or your work. It takes wisdom and vision to accept what they are saying and evaluate whether or not it is to be disregarded, or potentially used as a learning tool.
9. Meet pain with compassion.
To be successful but lose your humanity isn’t really “success” at all. When people become numbers and struggles become statistics in the eyes of those who are responsible for managing them, disassociating makes them seem out-of-touch, if not cruel.
10. Meditate on mortality.
As we go on aspiring to acquire more and more for our lives, it is imperative to “keep a skull on the desk,” so to say, or to remember that all of this is temporary, and all that will matter in the end is how much we gave, and how we made other people feel.
11. Consider the motivations of others.
Every brilliant inventor, entrepreneur, popular writer and artist in the world has a common skill, and that is to intuit the needs of others. To be able to understand why people behave as they do is imperative to meeting their needs. Rather than interpreting their actions or words on the surface, highly successful people ask why they are doing that.
12. Collaborate with the competition.
Working with the people that others would deem your “competition” not only makes your business stronger and more visible, but the principle of seeing others as partners as opposed to threats is not only a sign of good character, it makes for a more efficient businessperson.
13. See obstacles as opportunities.
Highly successful people are the heroes of their story, rather than the victim of their circumstances. They see life as being a reflection of who and how they are, and a field of potential onto which they can actualize themselves through committed practices and steadfast mental strength.
Top business skills to learn from poker
Poker is incredibly popular across the globe, with (according to World Poker Tour) more than 100 million online poker players. There are many millions more that play in land-based casinos, and the same number again that play it informally with friends and family.
Poker has been popular for centuries, as it is easy to learn, yet difficult to master. There are different variations of the game, and it has expanded to include tournaments, casual games, and high rollers tables, providing something for everyone. 888 Poker provides a vast range of options for players of all abilities and budgets.
Playing poker requires a number of skills, many of which can be beneficial in other areas of life, in particular business and entrepreneurship. Players must be self-aware, mentally strong, and resilient, entrepreneurs must be able to analyze incomplete information, read others, and take on new information quickly.
- Ability to learn quickly
When learning the game, players need to take on a great deal of information very quickly. They need to do some basic research on the rules, the different winning hands, and the probability of getting these hands. They also need to practice, practice, practice before heading out into the real world, and will often practice the game with friends, all striving to improve their own game.
In business, it is important to be able to take on new information and adapt to new situations. As in poker, to be successful in business individuals need to be adaptable and knowledgeable.
- Decision making
As well as being able to take on new (and changing) information, poker players need to be able to make decisions. Be it raising, calling, or folding, knowing what the appropriate action to take and when to take it is key to success at the table. In business, it is not dissimilar: knowing when to move forward, when to challenge, when to invest, and when to quit, are very important skills for any entrepreneur.
- Extrapolating from incomplete data
In poker, players will know what cards they hold and the communal cards but won’t know what their opponents are holding. They will be able to make deductions based on the information in front of them, and the behaviour of their opponents. Players won’t be able to have 100% of the information to be able to make their decisions and have to hope that their powers of deduction will lead to success.
In the world of business, if individuals waited until they had all the information it would be too late to take actions. They will need to get as much information as possible from different sources and make a decision balancing the level or risk. Resume provides a guide on crucial decision making for career development.
- Money management
When playing poker players shouldn’t gamble more than they can afford to lose; they should stick within their limits and play wisely to build up their pot of winnings. In business, it is similar. Entrepreneurs should ensure that their money is managed and invested appropriately. The higher the pay out, the higher the risk, and whilst sometimes in business it pays off to be risky, there needs to be a balance to ensure the business will survive. Fiscal mismanagement is one of the biggest reasons that new businesses fail.
- Mental acuity
When playing poker, players have to not only look at their cards and the communal cards, but identify how their opponents are playing, checking to see if they have any tells. It is vital to analyze the chances of winning, considering a number of different variables. Entrepreneurs have to analyze market conditions, their competitors, and be able to collect and interpret data accordingly.
Alongside mental acuity is mental strength: in poker, players can have periods where they win every hand, or lose every and, and it is important to know when to stop and when to change approach. In business, entrepreneurs need to know how to manage the ups and downs that inevitably come with being in business.
The top poker players are driven by a love of the game, not money. By being passionate about poker they learn the ins and outs of the game, learn about the psychology behind it, learn the tricks of the trade and invest in bettering themselves every step of the way. Money is a secondary consideration; apart from some of the top players in the world, there are easier and more dependable ways to make money.
Entrepreneurs should always be aware of the financial potential of their endeavours, but the success of the business will depend on the passion and dedication of its people. Yopreneur explains how entrepreneurs should be passionate and focus on doing what they love. Entrepreneurs should start out wanting to create something and enjoy the journey.
- Learning to fail
Even the most talented and experience poker players can fail. They can make a silly mistake that costs them the game, be trumped by a better player, or simply run out of luck. All players will lose some of the time; winning more than losing is a definite perk, but by no means guaranteed, especially when a player is starting out.
Estimates indicate that over 85% of start-ups fail, and it is important for entrepreneurs to remain resilient, pick themselves back up, and get back on the horse. They can learn from their mistakes and do better the next time.
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