This was an interesting question. Recently, my ten year old daughter asked me what my strongest attributes were in business and it took me by surprise for many obvious reasons. Here is a short recap of my thoughts on this question and my interaction with my daughter.
My number one go to attribute is work ethic. My secret formula for success is relentless work. This alone will not get it done because we all know plenty of people who work hard but never get anywhere. Another competency I have, which is also an attitude, is my sense of optimism. I am not a go-lucky or pie in the sky type of optimist. I want facts and figures so I can live in reality. I want to see things as they actually are not dilute my current vision of the situation. Yet, I also have extreme hope and positivity for the future. I am what I call, a pragmatic optimist. I don’t pretend one way or another that now is better or worse than it is but I have strong feelings of optimism about how good it can get. In other words, I am a dreamer. The third competency, which is actually a competency, is that I am effective. This is critical. Many people work hard. Many people are optimist. Not everyone is effective. I think you need this combination to be successful professionally, personally, and certainly in aiding in work as a change agent.
In the past, I have mentioned my goal to own the fastest lending company in the United States. This accomplishment took all of these attributes and more. It required a grit and staying with it that was foreign to us at the time and requires constant reminding now.
The biggest developmental opportunity I have right now is what I call “active listening”. It is another way of saying patience or another way of saying being present. Ironically, I get impatient waiting to be patient with people or ideas to formulate. I also seem to have to focus on something around me or within me to get myself present. For example, if you asked me to get present I would start thinking about my breath or focus on the trees or clouds, if any were in sight, but all of this makes me less present to you! So, I started doing something called active listening to make sure I am truly communicating with people, making sure they get a chance to be heard and know they are heard, and slow down my quick responses that often come without all the facts. Like they say, we have two ears and one mouth for a reason and listing twice as much as I talk is active listening demonstrated.
Onward and upward!