Achieving success in your job isn’t necessarily difficult. Know the scope of your duties. Perform your assigned tasks with excellence. Demonstrate integrity in your work ethic. For the most part, you will be “successful.” Many of us find this kind of success in our work. But are we “satisfied” in what we do? Is there anything more that we can (or should) expect to achieve through our work?
The vast majority of employees navigate the workaday world with routine completion of shifts, tasks, and projects. Clock in, clock out. But a lot of work is reactive rather than proactive. That is, we are handed (as it were) a list of tasks to complete each day. We react by responsibly handling those tasks to our supervisor’s requirements, only to repeat the same process the next day. And we tell ourselves too often that this job fits our abilities; our paychecks are reassurance that we’re doing a good job.
But what if we could elevate our work beyond the list? What if we could change our outlook on work, approaching each day proactively in order to produce more, achieve more, and ultimately succeed more? Wouldn’t that bring satisfaction, not just success, to our careers?
Bruce Kasanoff, a LinkedIn Influencer who writes often about careers, recently published an article titled “Formula for Incredible Career Success = C²G²” in which he highlights four essential qualities that can move your career from “success” to “satisfaction.”
If you can remember C²G², you can remember the four elements that will elevate your career from pretty good to incredible.
Kasanoff’s essential qualities to achieve incredible careers are:
- COMPASSION: Help others, proactively.
- CLARITY: Do well, not just mean well.
- GROWTH: Your abilities are always growing, never fixed.
- GRIT: Keep sustained effort toward long-term goals.
Clarity, growth, and grit all make a lot of sense in the workplace. Make yourself and your message clear and focused, see yourself with growing abilities, not static skills, and dig in with grit and determination to push through, accomplish, and succeed.
But compassion? What does that have to do with my career? Here’s how Kasanoff explains it:
My formula starts with compassion. It means to help others, proactively.
Yes, your goals are important. Yes, you have to stand up for yourself. But you also have to stand up for others.
Without compassion, you won’t be any good at selling.
Without compassion, you won’t be any good at serving your clients.
Without compassion, you won’t be able to maintain satisfying and strong relationships with others.
I’m not going to lie; you can be successful without compassion. I’m just not sure you can be happy without it.
The bottom line is this: Do you want to work the rest of your career checking off boxes on a task list?
Or, do you want to make a difference by the way you treat others? Not just being “nice” or “cordial” or “professional.” But showing interest in a customer’s needs, taking time to communicate that you want to help them achieve their goals and make them successful.
Compassion gives to others freely, but in the end brings you great satisfaction. Which means you can be both successful and satisfied in your work. It’s all a matter of attitude and building relationships.
Kasanoff sums it up this way:
I don’t have the research to prove it, but my gut says that the people who radically change our world for the better combine all four of these traits. They build schools, attack poverty, and lead companies with a sense of purpose.
The most exciting part of these four traits is that they all are within your grasp. You can decide to adopt them. It doesn’t matter if you are rich or poor, a genius or of “average” intelligence. If you set your mind to embrace this formula, you will change what you are capable of accomplishing. More importantly, you will change what others are capable of accomplishing.
(You can read Kasanoff’s entire article here.)