20 Points For Success – Part Four of Four

This is the last of 4 posts outlining my “20 Points for Success.” I hope these were thought-provoking and perhaps encouraged you to develop your own list of keys to success as you see them. We have covered the first 15 points in part 1, part 2 and part 3, and we end now with the final 5.

Best of luck as you continue to grow and develop – I think we may all agree that professional growth never stops, and lifetime learning is very real and very necessary. Please share your stories with me as I continue to grow and learn.

Here are the last five:

16. Infuse Passion

We have all heard much said about the benefits of having a passion for your life’s work. It is true, you know.  Get passionate about what you are doing.  Start to appreciate that what you do makes a difference in the lives of real people out there. If you can’t feel energetic and enthused and upbeat about spending your day trying to improve things  (systems, outcomes, relationships, and so on), then you need to check for a pulse.  Working is great and noble, and you should be proud of your daily contributions to the cause, whatever it is.  So put that pep in your step and smile more – you are making a difference to many people.

17. Cultivate Your Reputation

You are your reputation. What does yours say about you?  Work every day to improve it by doing what is right, taking care of one another and over-extending yourself to your client, your customers and your co-workers.  Do that and your reputation will speak volumes. Keep this in mind…it’s not who’s right, it’s what’s right, that’s important.

18.Display a Seriousness of Purpose and a Sense of Humor

Take your job seriously. Work hard at becoming better at it.  Study what you need to learn to become proficient and competent.  Work is a serious business and others will be depending on you knowing your job. Yes, work is serious, but you still need to have fun.  Keep your sense of humor at all costs!  Use it to diffuse tense situations, but be careful to use it appropriately – never to hurt someone else.  No matter how hard the day or how long the hours – it could always be worse.  Maintain perspective.

19. Continue to Grow 

You are responsible for your development and growth as a person and professionally. Others may be around to help with training, education, and job placement when appropriate, but we each need to take responsibility for discovering what we want to be and how we would like to get there. You will always be your best career manager.  When you stop growing, you die.  Be on the lookout for that next opportunity and be prepared.  As has been said and proven many times – success is when preparation meets opportunity.

20. Care for Those in Your Charge

As a leader, nothing is more defining than the way you take care of those in your charge. In this respect, leadership is not very different from parenthood. Your employees depend on you to set and enforce high standards, lead by example, and help them succeed. Leaders who care only for themselves or place themselves above the welfare of others are destined for failure, or at the very best, limited success.  The responsibility of leading is great, and you must constantly earn the right to be called a leader.

So, there are my “20 Points for Success.” They have served me well for more than 4 decades and I hope they will provide some food for thought as you work to determine the kind of employee, entrepreneur or leader you’d like to be.  As you progress, please come to appreciate the importance of friendships and the many relationships you will have the chance to develop and foster. All the skills, education, and experience in the world don’t match up to the value of the people around you.

Please let me know what you think, and you are welcome to share any other points that you find essential.

To read more about it, please contact me at dave@davemaurerconsulting.com or to purchase my book called Watering Rocks: How to Fail and Succeed as a Leader. I’d be happy to personalize a copy for you or a friend.


Dave served a full 22-year career as an Army officer and followed that with more than 2 decades as a senior executive in several consulting firms in the Northern Virginia area. He has managed and led thousands of soldiers, Army civilians, and private sector employees in more than 43 years in leadership positions. He speaks and writes about leadership, relationship management, career transition, and keys to success.  READ MORE

David S. Maurer

Lieutenant Colonel, USA (Ret.) , Project Management Professional (PMP)



Books By Dave

Watering Rocks - How to Fail and Succeed as a Leader - Book by David S. Maurer
Leadership Essentials - How to Lead with Passion, Pride and Purpose - Book by David S. Maurer