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Focus and persistence


The world watched as America elected its first African-American president on November 4. President-Elect Barrack Obama will reside in the White House, a home partially built by African and African-American slaves who never even thought about a black man rising to such an office. Now that that feat has been attained, what can we learn from Mr. Obama’s quest that is applicable to your journey as an employee or business owner?{{more}}

1. You have one shot. Mr. Obama entered the national stage four years ago at the Democratic National Convention and presented a short speech that energized the Convention and landed him a spot not only in the national spotlight but also on the world stage. That was his one shot. Your one shot may come in the form of presenting a report at a staff meeting or stating your opinion to management or calming the rage of a really nasty customer. Seize every moment and do your absolute best-you never know who is watching and what doors are waiting to be opened.

2. Be clear about what you want. Let’s not kid ourselves – I am sure thoughts of the presidency crossed Mr. Obama’s mind as he stepped onto that stage in 2004. He may not have articulated that to the world because it seemed unrealistic at the time, but he knew what he wanted. Do you know what you want? Have you sat down and written out your goals and aspirations in an organized, coherent fashion so that you can refer back to them on a regular basis?

3. Get Strategic. Before an individual decides to run for a major political office, an exploratory committee is formed to test the waters, get a pulse of the populace, and look at possible fundraising options. This preliminary work measures that individual’s chances for success. Have you done that with your hopes and dreams? Or, do you jump first, and ask questions later? Whether you are considering a career change, debating a return to school, or wanting to request a promotion or raise, do your homework first and calculate the best strategy to achieve your goal. Who can you talk to? Has anyone in your office accomplished what you are seeking to do? Have you planned out the steps you need to take? How will you survive at Point B once you get there?

4. Develop a thick skin. Not many people are equipped to handle the personal scrutiny that presidential candidates have to endure. How will you handle the gossipmongers who threaten you? What do you do when people in your office start slinging mud at your character? How will you handle attacks on your family and associates if they arise? Are you ready to walk away from some friendships if they no longer serve you?

5. Stand your ground. It’s been easy to be excited for Mr. Obama over the past few weeks, but during the early months of his campaign, when his quest seemed like a pie-in-the-sky dream, he had to stand his ground. Have you developed that kind of resolve to stick to your goals and dreams when all around you makes it seem impossible? Or, will you cave at the first sign of major problems? Remember, the race is not for the swift, but for those who can endure.

Karen Hinds President/CEO –
Workplace Success Group,
Toll Free: 1-877-902-2775;
Tel: 1-203-757-4103
A CT Winner of the Make Mine a Million Dollar Business award!
Creator of The Workplace Success Program (TM)