11 Definitions of Success in Your Career
From founders to career coaches, eleven esteemed professionals weigh in on the multifaceted nature of career success. From receiving recognition and respect to choosing fulfillment over burnout, this compilation offers a rich mosaic of insights into what constitutes achievement in the professional realm.
- Receiving Recognition and Respect
- Seeing Results and Achieving Sustainable Growth
- Having a Well-Rounded Professional Life
- Redefining Success With Balance and Contentment
- Maintaining Job Security and Value
- Building a Reputable Business Legacy
- Finding Freedom and Autonomy
- Shifting from Accolades to Community Contribution
- Empowering Others Marks True Success
- Innovating and Going Out of the Comfort Zone
- Choosing Fulfillment Over Burnout
Receiving Recognition and Respect
One of the elements of my successful career in the food industry as an online supplier is the recognition and respect that are key ingredients. In the workplace, recognition can come in various forms, like praise, promotions, or bonuses, and it helps motivate employees and boost job satisfaction.
Respect is shown through active listening, valuing others' opinions, and treating everyone with empathy. A respectful work environment promotes a positive culture, reduces stress, and encourages collaboration and creativity. They go hand in hand in creating a thriving career.
Seeing Results and Achieving Sustainable Growth
As a life coach, success is when my clients experience real, lasting changes in their lives. It's about them achieving better mental health, building stronger relationships, or becoming more mindful and present.
When a client tells me they feel happier or more at peace because of our sessions, that's success. As an entrepreneur, it's also about building a sustainable business that helps people and brings meaningful change to our world.
Having a Well-Rounded Professional Life
Success in my career is defined by personal growth, making a meaningful impact, maintaining work-life balance, being adaptable, and finding happiness and fulfillment in the journey.
It goes beyond traditional metrics and encompasses a well-rounded and fulfilling professional life.
Redefining Success With Balance and Contentment
One way to define success in your career is to look at how it enhances, adapts to, and balances the rest of your life. If we shift from thinking that our career itself is the key definer of success to thinking of our career as one slice of our larger pie of life, it opens up a whole new definition of career success.
Instead of thinking, "How much money do I earn?" think, "What kind of lifestyle do I want, and how does the money I earn support that?"
Instead of thinking, "How senior is my title and role?" think, "How aligned am I with the amount of responsibility I have, and how does that affect my capacity for other important relationships in my life?"
Instead of thinking, "How quickly can I get to the top?" think, "How does this career offer me a long, sustainable path that I will feel content growing and developing in?"
Making this perspective shift was massive and helped me define my career success as having balance, sustainability, and contentment.
Maintaining Job Security and Value
Experienced employees, top performers, and keystone staff members all have one thing in common: they are indispensable. Employers, therefore, encourage them to stay by any means necessary, making job security a powerful indicator of career success.
Less successful employees, however, are often treated as expendable. Their managers often couldn't care less whether they stay or leave and make no attempt to keep them long-term. Ultimately, this puts them in precarious positions, creating a palpable sense of job insecurity.
Job security is, therefore, an effective by-product of career success, serving as a useful litmus test for how far you have come in your career.
Building a Reputable Business Legacy
I measure success by my reputation. I run a business in an industry (death care) that cares deeply about trust and integrity. My reputation among my peers is very important.
Having a good reputation means that my business is large enough and influential enough that others know about it and can form a positive opinion about it and how I run the business.
My reputation is a testament to my staying power and ability to consistently help clients. That's success.
Finding Freedom and Autonomy
For me, professional success revolves around the concept of freedom. This includes the freedom to choose projects that interest me and the ability to control how, when, and where I work.
Being my own boss has allowed me to not only curate a diverse portfolio of engaging projects but also to cultivate meaningful collaborations with inspiring, like-minded entrepreneurs. This entrepreneurial journey has fostered personal and professional development, allowing me to establish a business that not only brings joy and gratitude but also a profound sense of liberation from the traditional 9-to-5 grind.
The ability to shape my work environment and contribute to projects that align with my values are important factors that define my career.
Jemma Wiltshire, Business Owner, Jemma Wiltshire Design
Shifting from Accolades to Community Contribution
Early in my career, success meant professional recognition and a track record of winning cases. It was a standard I aimed for, and achievements in the courtroom were my primary measure. However, as time passed, my perspective evolved.
Success for me now is intertwined with a sense of giving back—contributing to both my profession and the community. It's a shift from personal accolades to the impact I can make.
True success, I've come to realize, is when my practice aligns with the values and the needs of my clients—only then can I succeed in delivering justice for my clients and the community.
Empowering Others Marks True Success
Success in my career is deeply intertwined with the positive impact I've made on people's lives. It's not just about the financial milestones or market reach but how our sportswear has empowered individuals.
A particularly defining moment was during a local marathon, where a participant who had lost a significant amount of weight and regained health using our fitness guides and apparel crossed the finish line.
Witnessing their joy and hearing about their journey, where our products played a crucial role, was profoundly rewarding. That moment underscored the essence of success for me—creating value that transcends mere business achievements and genuinely enhances lives.
Innovating and Going Out of the Comfort Zone
To me, success in my career is about constantly pushing myself out of my comfort zone and taking on new challenges. It's about embracing change and innovation to stay ahead in the rapidly evolving digital marketing landscape.
Success also means having the flexibility to maintain a healthy work-life balance and pursue my passions outside of work. For instance, when I successfully launch a new campaign that incorporates cutting-edge marketing strategies and delivers exceptional results, I feel like I've achieved success in my career.
Gil Clark Jr., CEO, GH Clark
Choosing Fulfillment Over Burnout
To me, success in my career means feeling fulfilled at work the majority of the time. I understand that I won't love what I'm doing 100% of the time, but if I can get to 80%, I feel successful.
Keeping a pulse on that feeling of fulfillment is critical, so I know when an adjustment needs to be made. This helps me avoid burnout.