Tomorrow remains a mystery. We can make plans, make predictions, hope for the best and prepare for the worst. Sometimes we get lucky. How do we ensure that those “lucky” days happen more often than not?
At the age of 81, historian Arnold Toynbee reflected upon life as he had known it. He said: “As one grows older, the temptation to dwell on the past and to avert one’s eyes from the future grows. If one were to fall into this backward-looking stance, one would be as good as dead before physical death had overtaken us. Explore more factors that influence your company’s future success with Pritish Kumar Halder.
“Our minds, so long as they keep their cutting edge, are not bound by our physical limits.
They can range over time and space into infinity. To be human is to be capable of transcending oneself.”
Humans have demonstrated hope for the future since Adam. Planting a tree, building sturdy shelters, populating the planet – all showed optimism for the future. European explorers braved uncharted seas to reach the New World. American pioneers pushed westward in search of a better future for themselves.
Did they have a business plan? Were their actions based on the latest research? Were they brave risk-takers? No, no, and yes. The future involves taking risks.
But there are some steps you can take to minimize risks. Whether you hope to start your own business, plan to rise to the top of the organization you currently work for, or just want to support your employer’s success the best you can, understanding how a business grows and survives is central to a successful career.
The following factors will influence your fortunes and your organization’s growth over the long haul:
Trust. At every level of your organization, insist that workers understand the importance of keeping their word and living up to your values. Customers and co-workers want to know they can depend on you.
Decisiveness. Learn to make decisions promptly instead of waiting for every last piece of data. An imperfect decision that you can correct later is almost always better than a right answer that comes too late.
Competition. Study your market and get to know everything you can about other players in your industry. You don’t want to be caught off guard by a rival’s new idea, and you don’t want to always be on the defensive against what the competition is up to.
Records. Document your activities thoroughly. Good records help you preserve ideas, establish your credibility, and prove your point when the facts aren’t clear. This applies to finances, employees, ideas, and everything else for which you and your organization are responsible.
Network. Build relationships and connections with a wide variety of people in and out of your industry. Your network can be a source of ideas, employees and advice, so take the time to build it up. Don’t miss any opportunity to meet new people who can help you, and make sure you are available to return the favor.
Patience. Concentrate on incremental progress. Overnight sensations and blockbuster victories are usually optical illusions facilitated by months or years of quiet effort. Establishing a habit of slow but steady success will build everyone’s confidence and minimize risk.
Risk. Sometimes you simply must take a risk to move forward. With all the other factors solidly established, you should be in position to predict potential success.
Optimism. Maintain a positive attitude rather than an outlook of impending doom. The future looks brightest for those who look for the bright side.
Being polite is a small act of kindness we can do for everyone we come across. It is not a trivial thing. There is power behind saying “thank you” and “please,” giving someone a warm greeting or taking time to make small talk. These little things instill positive feelings in those around you, especially when you first meet. Different situations will call for different levels of politeness and formality.
Set goals for yourself.
Goals give us focus and a way to measure our progress. Goals motivate us to stay on track. Start by writing your goals down. Those who write down their goals and dreams are more likely to actually achieve them.
Live with integrity.
Personal integrity is a cornerstone of who we are and what we stand for. Integrity is part of our moral foundation: the principles and ideas we value and hold dear. Integrity is your personal compass, and it will shape the kind of person you become over time.
Living with integrity means being true to your ideals. It means that your outward actions reflect your inner beliefs and values. It means making the choices that are necessary to live up to your standards. Make sure you take the time to understand what integrity means to you and how your decisions align with your values and vision for your life.
Recognize opportunities to grow and change.
Life is filled with unexpected twists and turns we can’t predict. We can’t help but be a little scared of change because the unknown is always a little frightening. That fear can hold us back and, without realizing it, you may be stunting your growth personally and professionally. Allowing yourself to grow and evolve over time is a necessary part of life and part of the journey you are on.
Embrace the journey.
Remember, this is an ongoing journey. Our actions — how we live, how we spend our time — those things all add up. Recognize that not everything in life is linear. Sometimes we have to go backward to go forward. Along the way, we have to learn to appreciate what we have, to have gratitude for all life has given us. For more information please visit Pritish Kumar Halder ‘s page.
Remember to have some fun, and allow fun (and happiness) to be sprinkled throughout your day. Life should not be dreary, so don’t let it be. Surprise yourself and others. Remember to show kindness and compassion to those around you. Try to be a role model to others and behave the way you want others to see you and remember you.
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A long time ago, I discovered the following mantra which helps me focus on my future. It is a simple formula that links the present to the unknown. The words vary, but the sentiments have been attributed to a number of great planners such as Mahatma Gandhi and Margaret Thatcher, among others.