If you are a young professional in Corporate America, or you are an aspiring Entrepreneur who is looking to make connections and build or join a business team, standing out form the crowd is important. What sets you apart from everyone else and how can you show it? Why would someone want you to join their company or business? Obviously there are a lot of factors that play into if a job or business is the right fit, such as personality, overall business/career goals, and mission of the company or business. Since I have had the privilege of mentoring many young, ambitious individuals on our business team for several years, I have outlined some qualities or traits that I look for in someone that will help you to raise your head above the crowd.
1. Take initiative: Ask questions, seek answers and mentorship. As much of a tech savy world we live in, you must be willing to go out and find the information. My mother always says that you don't need to know everything, you just need to know where to find it! Be resourseful and you will stand out.
2. Have a PMA: A Positive Mental Attitude (PMA) is looking at things with a glass-half-full mentality. Let's face it, things don't always go our way, but it is how we respond that really determines whether or not we have a positive or negative attitude. I had a day not long ago that could have really sent me over the edge of negativity. In the morning I got a flat tire on the highway during rush hour traffic. After pulling over and taking out my spare tire, I realized that I did not have a jack in my trunk! 1 hour later the Road Ranger came and changed my tire. Later on that same day, I got ticketed for not wearing a seat belt as I pulled out of a parking lot. I had reached down to get something and was going to put it back on but it was too late! Ticket! That day I refused to let myself have a pity party; it was still going to be a great day and I made it so! It was all about my attitude. Do you have a PMA even when things don't go well?
3. Have Goals: Know where you want to go and what you are willing to do to get there. Have you ever spoken to someone who had no goals? What a dull and boring conversation it is! Nobody wants to work with or hire a person who does not have any idea of what they want or where they want to go in life. Goals give you life! Goals give you the reason to get up and get out in the morning. You have to be willing to pay the price to achieve your goals. Success in anything does not come easy nor over night. Be willing to fight for your goals and dreams and do what it takes to achieve them- legally of course!
4. Be open to taking risks and keep an open mind: Don't be so critical about everything that you miss opportunities and chances to excel. I have seen many individuals that I have shared my business with be so analytical and overly critical that they don't even see the opportunity for what it is…an opportunity! No one will want to work with you if all you do is find the negative in everything and are not willing to take a risk or have an open mind. After all, part of success is taking a chance or risk in the first place. If you are not willing to change, then you will not be able to grow professionally or in business in order to achieve your goals.
5. Be a Go-Getter: Have a can-do attitude about everything, even if you don't now how to do something or don't have the experience. A prospective employer or business partner will want to know that you are willing to learn and/or overcome obstacles along the way. Don't give excuses on why you can't do something, figure it out, and if you can't, ask for help. This is part of having a PMA.
These are some of the major qualities that will help you to stand out from the rest of your peers. As always, there are exceptions, but if you adopt these traits and thought processes, you will attract great people and stand out that will help you advance in your business or career.
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