Seven things successful career women do differently

Want to take your career up a gear (or four)? Learn seven things successful career women do differently, and try adopting some of them yourself.

What are the real secrets behind a high-flying career? What do the women who have made it to the top, do differently from the rest of us? And how can we follow in their footsteps and achieve some of their success?

Seven things successful career women do differently

To help you, we explore seven things that super-successful career women do differently – and look at why this could be behind some of their amazing achievements.

And maybe, by adopting some of their advice, we too can emulate some of their success!

1) Get an early start

It stands to reason that the longer your working day, the more tasks you can complete. But rather than staying up until 3am, isn’t it much easier to wake up earlier and get a head start on your day?

And getting more work done, isn’t the only benefit to waking earlier. It also leaves more room for a healthy lifestyle:

  • Your sleep schedule can be properly regulated.
  • You can kick the day off with a nutrient and healthy breakfast
  • You can even get in some exercise routines to keep you energised and ready.

No surprise then that waking early is one of the seven top productivity secrets, and is popular with successful women such as Michelle Gass, President of Starbucks, and Vogue editor Anna Wintour, both of whom wake up earlier than 7am to run and hit the tennis court.

2) Grow from passion

Natalie Massenet is the daughter of a foreign correspondent and a Chanel model, and grew up in Paris and Los Angeles. So no surprise that fashion journalism came to her so naturally that she considered it to be a joke.

It was only later when she realised the reason behind this feeling was that she wholeheartedly loved her job.

Natalie went on to found Net-a-Porter, and is still Executive Chairman today. She stresses the importance of the relationship between love and work, so make sure you know which career path you want to pursue, and do so with an open heart and strong beliefs.

3) Share your responsibilities

In other words, delegate! As a working mother you have a lot on your plate, so learn what and when you can share. This is important at work and at home (read advice on how to end housework battles with your partner!).

If you find delegating hard, you’re in good company – it’s an issue that has been haunting Katie Brand, CEO of the hotel chain Four Seasons, for some time, and she openly admits to being a huge control freak.

Even if you feel that the only way something can be done right is by doing it yourself, try to let go. Delegating will give you more time and energy to focus on important tasks that only you can do.

4) Rise from failure

One of the primary lessons to keep in mind when pursuing any kind of goals is not to let failure stop you.

This is advice voiced by many people, including Nancy Dubuc, the woman who managed to breathe new life in Lifetime and The History Channel and is now President and General Manager of both channels.

Nancy recommends not just moving past any unpleasant failures in your life, but actually to look at them as opportunities to grow and learn.

5) Keep your curiosity alive

In today’s fast-paced world, being curious is one of the most important qualities to possess, according to Disney-ABC Television Group CEO, Anne Sweeney.

She emphasises how curiosity is the equivalent to open mindedness and refreshing ideas, saying: “The smartest thing you can ever do is to constantly ask questions.”

6) Be a good listener

It’s admirable to strive for perfection, but you need to be realistic in you expectations of achieving it, and it’s improbable that nothing you do will ever be completely perfect.

However, listening to the feedback of others, and genuinely taking it on board, can certainly help you to get further towards that perfect ideal. By listening to others you’ll spot flaws in your thinking or approach, and can get idea for ways to resolve them.

Listening to other also shows respect, compassion and care – qualities that will help you to strengthen your bonds with colleagues, managers and partners.

It also can help you earn a LOT more money, as Sheryl Sandberg discovered when she listened to her husband and brother-in-law when negotiating with Facebook!

7) Be self-aware

Being self-aware means getting to know both your strengths and your weaknesses. Self-awareness is a great confidence booster. When you know what you’re good at (and not) you can make wiser decisions and embrace opportunities you know you can succeed in.

You also won’t fear that you may suddenly fail at any point, as you’re aware of the limits of your abilities (and can take action to address them with experience, advice or training).

Self-awareness helped Carolyn Everson, VP of Global Marketing Solutions for Facebook. She says that believing in herself, even when she failed, helped her to grow stronger and wiser.

What can YOU do differently?

How many of the seven things successful women do differently do you do already? And how many can you adopt? Even if it’s just setting your alarm for an hour earlier?

Try out at least one of these seven things this week, and see what difference it makes.