Top Qualities for Success

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Every one has advice to give… But not every one with advice is worth listening to.

Some of the worst advice I was ever given was, “Wait for opportunity.”

Opportunity doesn’t just fall out of the sky, though. Success doesn’t come from waiting for something to happen. It comes by creating it. Most CEOs and entrepreneurs will tell you that.

If you truly want to succeed, here’s some of the best advice I can give you. “Trust your judgment. And don’t always rely on widespread opinion.” I’m sure you’re well aware that too many cooks in the kitchen can destroy a good thing.

Have credibility. Once you lose credibility with anything you do, especially as a trusted CEO, it’s tough to earn back.  Two, be competent. Know your business. Show an understanding of the business model. Own it.

And actually care by putting the organization – and others – before yourself.

I bring this up after reading an Entrepreneur article on CEO advice. I’d like to share some of my favorites from that article. More can be found here.

"I never set out to be CEO. I always set out to be a good team member, a good colleague.” John Stumpf, Wels Fargo.

“Every time you make the hard, correct decision you become a bit more courageous, and every time you make the easy, wrong decision you become a bit more cowardly. If you are CEO, these choices will lead to a courageous or cowardly company.” Ben Horowitz, Andreessen Horowitz.

“To build a great company, which is a CEO's job, sometimes you have to stand up against conventional wisdom.” Carly Fiorina, Hewlett-Packard.

“Teaching your employees something new creates an instant connection, and they will respect you for it. If you can do this in a job interview, you will be sure to attract the smartest people. Money doesn’t mean much to a lot of the smartest people in the world—they want to grow their intelligence rather than their wallet. If you show employees that they will progress intellectually in their career, and economically while at your company, then they will want to work for you.” Taso Du Val, Toptal.

“The path to the CEO's office should not be through the CFO's office, and it should not be through the marketing department. It needs to be through engineering and design.” Elon Musk, SpaceX.

“Just because you are CEO, don't think you have landed. You must continually increase your learning, the way you think, and the way you approach the organization. I've never forgotten that.” Indra Nooyi, PepsiCO.