CAREER DEVELOPMENT / JUN. 14, 2016
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President Obama Urges People to Be Strategic with their Careers

There’s only one way to success and that is to plan your way there. Leave nothing to chance, plan your big success because that’s the only way forward.

At the beginning of May President Obama found himself in his old stomping ground - Harvard - to deliver a speech to the graduating class of 2016. He spoke about many things, first and foremost though he spoke about how the world has progressed since he graduated college.

See Also: Michelle Obama Highlights Employment Challenges Female Veterans Face

And although his speech was very inspirational, I’d like to examine how it can be applied to your professional success.

#1 Be Confident

As a job seeker or as a person who’s trying to make the most out of their career you’ve probably heard this piece of advice one too many times. Being confident is often regarded as an innate characteristic some people are born with, and it’s often believed that success is bestowed only to those who were lucky enough to be born confident but the reality is that confidence can be learned.

And to learn to be confident you need to do one thing, you need to have faith in who you are and in your skills. Even if someone has more qualifications than you do, you still deserve to get the job as long as you trust yourself. Being confident is simply a matter of knowing what you are willing to do.

#2 Be Aware

Obama The Guardian

President Obama made note of the injustices and the racism we need to be aware of, but this advice applies in the workplace as well. We may often turn a blind eye to injustices at work but remember that if your company or boss was willing to oust a person for a little mistake they’ll do the same to you when the time comes.

So be aware of your environment at work and understand everyone's principles, whether that’s your boss or your colleagues. This will help you stay ahead.

Although it would be great to say that you could stand up each time one of your colleagues was treated unfairly by your boss, the reality of the workplace is much harsher. But, you can remain vigilant so that you can fight back when the time’s right.

#3 Passion Can’t Get You Everywhere But Strategy Can

As much as we all agree that passion is an indispensable tool in your professional success the truth is that it’s only 30 percent of the struggle because the rest of the struggle is made up of your determination.

As discussed earlier awareness is essential, however, it’s important to put that awareness into action and make it a strategy. Change, President Obama says, requires a program and organization and this is exactly what you need to succeed professionally.

Organize your career and decide where you want to go, then decide what steps can get you there and start making those steps sooner rather than later.

See Also: The World's Most Famous Introverts

You can watch President Obama’s speech here:

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