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As an expert career coach, my goal is to empower young professionals to reach their full potential. And one thing I’ve learned is that young careerists fail to attain optimal success because they don’t know how to stay on top of their game after college. Consequently, they often fall into the trap of becoming “stuck” in their careers shortly after graduation.
To help ensure that you don’t fall into this trap, I turned to Clark Atlanta University business professor Dennis Kimbro, Ph.D. for success secrets. Kimbro has dedicated a large part of his life studying and surveying the success principles of Black millionaires. He co-authored, with The Napoleon Hill Foundation, bestselling book Think and Grow Rich: A Black Choice and recently published The Wealth Choice: Success Secrets of Black Millionaires. The dynamic speaker has also been featured in major media outlets such as Essence, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal.
When I talked to Kimbro, he was on fire and excited to share his secrets with BlackEnterprise.com readers. From his survey encounters of the wealthiest African-Americans, he shares the following success secrets that you must internalize to stay on top of your game well beyond your college years:
Success Secret 1:
- When developing your skills: You must realize that corporate America and all other companies are not “hiring.” Instead, they are seeking to add value to their companies by filling positions with top talent. You must figure out what it takes for you to become recognized as one of the top professionals in your field; and then work hard to achieve this status. You have to continuously work on upgrading your talent to become a game changer!
Success Secret 2:
- When looking for a job: Think outside of the box and show a high level of determination to standout. For example, identify a Fortune 500 company and take a trip to their parking lot. When you get there, discover where the power players park their vehicles by spotting the “reserved” signs. Be bold and place your polished resume on their windshields inside of a folder and then follow-up later. Making such strategic boss moves will help you standout!
Success Secret 3:
- When interviewing: Be confident and speak like a champion. During the interview you have to do two very important things. 1) When it’s your turn to ask questions, ask “what are the top skills that you are looking for in individuals that you bring on board?” 2) After you hear the answers, your response should be: “when I consider the requirements for this position I know I’m a good fit for this company because my knowledge, skills, and abilities would allow me to immediately add value to the company’s core mission.” Lastly, make sure that you specifically highlight how your talents align with the company’s preferred skills!
Success Secret 4:
- When networking: Stay connected by regularly congratulating the success of key business professionals. Navigate LinkedIn and daily newspapers to find out who attained a new position or is being recognized for success. Find their contact information and send them a note of praise. This will get you far in the networking game because the best type of praise is unexpected praise—so give praise!
Success Secret 5:
- When doubting: It’s simple—don’t doubt. Get the tough economy mindset out of your head because expectation leads to manifestation. Take control of your career and become a go-getter!
Antoine Moss, Ph.D., (@2PositiveTweets) is a nationally recognized resource on internships, early career achievement, leadership and motivation. CEO and founder of CEO Style Consulting L.L.C., Moss empowers professionals and organizations to reach their full potential, and serves as speaker, workshop instructor and consultant. The author of Learn to Intern CEO Style, Moss has been a featured expert on outlets including Fox 8 TV News and George Fraser’s 2011 Power Networking Conference.