What makes somebody successful? Ask 100 people, and you will get 100 different answers. That is because we are all wonderfully diverse and unique.
When I think about International Women’s Day as a coach who champions equality, I’ve come to notice the race to success is anyone’s game – and today, that playing field is very much level.
Success, whatever that looks like, and the achievement of it is greatly determined by ‘who’ the individual is – who they choose to be, ‘show up’ as, and what internal resources they draw upon. They may be clear on what they want and what they want to achieve – and whether they do or not often comes down to a few key factors. Here is what I’ve come to notice in successful people – be they leaders, managers, athletes, business owners – male, female, experienced or inexperienced:
A strong positive sense of self They know how to ‘show up’ as their best… and they also know how they can get in their own way and have strategies to overcome that. They manage their responses and emotions and don’t allow these to sabotage the progress towards where they’re going.
They know where they’re going They are fully tuned into their sense of purpose – why they do what they do and the vision for what they want to move towards. It is deeply motivating; they are crystal clear on what that looks like, and they hold it in focus constantly.
They take people with them on the journey Successful people are people who others want to go on the journey with. They recognise the part others play in delivering the desired outcome and that their job is to facilitate, pull out their excellence, and lead it and support where relevant. They create the conditions for motivation in others and help them be their best.
They remain present They don’t push too hard. They keep their foot steadily on the gas, maintaining positivity and belief that the outcome will be realised. They manage their energies, maintain boundaries and serve themselves and others well.
Successful people know their ‘structure of excellence’; – how they think, behave and communicate when they are their best. They keep tabs on that, knowing that if they do that, they give themselves (and others) the best chance of achieving.
So why do I write this on International Women’s Day? Why is this relevant to women today? Because decades ago, this may not have been consistently the case. Today, women have an equal seat at the table and an equal chance to achieve their own version of excellence. Today, I coach as many senior leader women as I do men, as many female athletes as I do male – and I love that equality. Male or female – their opportunity and potential are theirs to create, and I’m always excited to see where they go.
On this day, I share my observations for everyone to read (male and female) and simply champion my fellow women to keep serving yourselves well, be aware of who you are when you are your best, know how you do it – and do it.