The Most Important Measure of Success
Being respected by others is very important to each of us. A survey done by the Gallup organization found that the most prominent living Americans rated the respect of others as the most important measure of success in life. They worked very hard to earn the respect of their parents, the respect of their spouses and children, the respect of their peers and colleagues, and the respect of mankind at large.
Why You Respect Yourself
It seems that we truly respect ourselves only when we feel that we are respected by others, and we will go to great lengths to earn and keep that respect. When we feel that someone respects us for who we are and what we have accomplished, we tend to be more open to that person's influence.
Two Things You Can Do
We can do two things to put ourselves in a position to be respected by others. The first is to develop our knowledge of our field. The more people perceive you know about your subject, the more they will respect you. The highest-paid people in almost every field are those who know more than the average people. They are recognized as experts, and they develop what is called "expert power." Because of their superior knowledge, they are looked up to and listened to, and they are much more capable of influencing others to act in a particular way than they would be if their knowledge level were just average.
Develop Your Expertise
Another way to put ourselves in a position of being respected by others is to develop your expertise. Expertise is closely tied to knowledge, but it is a little different. Expertise is the ability to do, the ability to perform well in your chosen field. Men and women with expertise are those who practice over and over in whatever they do until they become known far and wide as the very best in their field.
Here are two things you can do immediately to put these ideas into action:First, study your field in detail. Dedicate at least one hour per day to reading, listening to audio programs, studying to become more and more knowledgeable about what you do. Second, continually upgrade your knowledge and skills in your field. Identify your weakest important skill and go to work on that.
Knowledge and know-how are the keys to the 21st century