Want to be Successful at work? Here are some things to do that don’t require getting an MBA.

If you are like me, you never want to look at your resume again. And all those articles about the details you need to perfect your resume are probably spot on, but…shouldn’t the fact that I’m a good person be more important than how many times I’ve increased revenue by 350%? Yes, actually, it is. And keep including those 350% stats…just…be more specific.

Often, we focus on developing our careers through acquiring more skills and education that we sometimes forget it is also important to demonstrate strong character. Here are some good character traits to focus on, that will also have an impact on our success:

Be punctual. Being punctual shows that you are dependable (be that too) and respect the people you are working with. It shows you are organized and are most likely a good planner. Punctuality requires little effort, but will definitely ensure your manager and those responsible for your raises/bonuses aren’t frustrated with you.

Be kind. Be empathetic in hard conversations. Keep an open perspective. Take a minute when someone disagrees with you to understand where they are coming from, and how it might differ from your perspective. Being kind will help you out in tough situations – colleagues are more willing to help people they like!

Be a good communicator. Listen! Talk less…and think first. That shows that you care about the person you are talking to. But, also…really care about the person. Avoid ambiguity and practice specificity.

Be Energetic. This can be a hard one to develop and it might push you out of your comfort zone, but the greatest leaders have learned how to channel energy into success. Find something in your job that really matters to you and learn to love it. Don’t be afraid to show some passion and celebrate the small achievements that matter to you.

Have a good attitude. Don’t complain about long meetings, co-workers, clients, or customers. If you must share feedback, remember to be kind (see above!). If someone is complaining to you, thank them for their feedback. There will be days where everything goes wrong …but, people will like you more if you have a good attitude…people that might hire you or promote you.

I’ve definitely met people who are inherently good but can get jealous of others for whom patience and finesse seem easy. The great thing is, it’s something we can all practice and perfect! Do you want to be a better listener? More organized? More committed at work? You can! Pick something you want to improve on and work on it. Even if you’ve doubled revenue by 350%, you will still need your managers to like you. Improving character, will only improve efficiency at work and enable those crucial conversations for promotions or improve your chances for landing the job you want. 

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