America’s got Talent. Britain’s got Talent. Canada’s got Talent. If you paid attention to the media, you could begin to believe that being successful had everything to do with something you’re either born with or not, but you’d be wrong.

You don’t need to be smart, talented or pretty to make it in today’s world, in fact most of what you really need to get ahead requires none of that. Here’s my top ten.

  1. Start – you fail at 100% of the things you never try.
  2. Show-up early – call it prep time, lead time, respect for others time, whatever. Bottom line is more good things will come from being fifteen minutes early than five minutes late.
  3. Be prepared – plan your work so you can…
  4. Work hard – …work your plan, a little bit more every day, whether you feel like it or not.
  5. Maintain a Positive Energy Level – Eat, drink, exercise, rest and recreate with outcomes in mind.
  6. Have an Optimistic Attitude – every “problem” you encounter is an opportunity in disguise.
  7. Be Coachable – you are a project that is in constant development, pay attention to feedback.
  8. Be empathetic – Be mindful of others individuality, take care to communicate and engage respectfully.
  9. Go The Extra Mile – Five minutes extra time every day adds up to over twenty hours extra a year.
  10. Finish what you start – even if it stinks, get it done, then get started on your second draft, version two-point-oh, or the upgrade.

Sensei Richard Verlaan