DYV05: Common traits found among successful people

In my previous post I discussed how students need to understand the direct link between professional success and personal growth. If students want to successfully market themselves in today’s challenging economy, they should also realize that successful people around the world and throughout history have demonstrated a common set of traits and habits. Instead of just listing the traits and habits of success below, however, I intentionally phrased them in questions so as to challenge the reader to reflect upon each one.

  1. How comfortable are you at being uncomfortable?
  2. How often do you create a vision for your life?
  3. How often do you believe you create your own life?
  4. How often do you rebound from failure?
  5. What is your level of self-discipline?
  6. How often do you exercise courageous behavior?
  7. Do you believe in yourself when others do not?
  8. To what extent do you engage in self-promotion?
  9. How resourceful are you?
  10. How would you describe your ability to persevere difficult situations?
  11. How often do you work towards a specific goal?
  12. How often do you prioritize?
  13. How often do you collaborate?
  14. What is your level of understanding?
  15. Do you practice self-improvement?
  16. How often do you discuss ideas?
  17. How are you with change?
  18. How often do you take calculated risks?
  19. How often do you ask yourself empowering questions?
  20. How well do you differentiate from others?

It is important to keep in mind three factors here.

  • First, not all successful people exhibit every one of these traits but they do exhibit some combination of them.  When students participate in volunteer opportunities around the world they can acquire firsthand experience as to how people in other cultures exhibit these traits and habits.
  • Second, student needs to understand that with practice they can indeed develop and enhance one or more of these traits and habits. Studying a language in a location different then your own allows students an opportunity to do just that.
  • Third, achieving success is s recipe that involves a combination of these traits and habits and it is only through trial and error does one learn what the recipe is. Experiential travel programs, whether they are in Philadelphia, Italy, South Africa or anywhere else in the world, all provide tremendous opportunities for students to better understand how people around the world achieve success through these traits and habits.

We may speak different languages, dress according to our cultures and live in various types of housing but we are united by a bond of achieving our dreams by relying on a shared set of traits and habits.

“Discover Your Value (DYV)” is a 14-part blog series that helps individuals learn how to communicate their value to others with an emphasis on their international experience. Michael Edmondson, Ph.D., is the Director of Marketing and Recruitment for The Philadelphia Center. He and Peter Abramo, Ph.D., are the authors of The ABCs of Marketing Yourself: A Workbook for College Students, upon which this series of blog posts is based. You can follow Michael on Twitter at @ThinkActGrow.

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2 Responses to “DYV05: Common traits found among successful people”

  1. Working Nomad
    Friday, 6 June 2014 at 4:15 #

    I don’t agree with much of that, I consider myself successful and don’t show many of those traits. Also how do you measure success? Being a high flyer working all hours and being stressed is not what I’d call successful.


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