Well respected professionals have been sharing their best career advice in Four Words or less and what they say is definitely worth reading. The question has been shared multiple times on various social channels and I’ve collated some of the best answers here.

Surprisingly many people have been sharing some very smart advice with some common themes. Which suggests that the answer to being successful is no secret, it’s well-known but we just have to action the great advice.

In fact all the advice can even be grouped around a small number of key themes, which can help us to really focus on success.

I’ve highlighted what I believe the key themes are and how we can apply those. Then I’ve listed the most common/best career advice in 4 words or less so you can have a lot at some of the inspiring answers yourselves (simply scroll down the page).

 

The common themes that help define the best career advice by professionals

 

1) Everyone has some form of fear at points in their career 

Work life is never as easy as we are led to believe. At times we have to step into the unknown and do things that are outside of our comfort zones. However when respected professionals tell you to feel the fear and do it anyway, then you should understand that everyone goes through the same thing but the most successful drive through the fear.

Feel the fear, understand that all great people felt it and then drive through it to better things as good things often lie outside your comfort zones. We don’t get anywhere by being safe and not leaving your comfort zone. It will be slightly uncomfortable and worrying, but that is where all the good things lie.

Believe in yourself and your abilities to overcome the many hurdles you will face and surely overcome.

 

2) Always try your best

Always try you best. To many times it becomes easy to give less than our best; to be average to less. But the best comes to those that persevere and try hard so don’t do yourself a disservice by not working hard. The harder you work the luckier you become, so always try to do more than expected.

In essence it’s all about adding more value.  Don’t just work, ensure you add value as doing the minimum is not the way to excel. The more value you add the more unfireable you become as you become essential to the company.

Even as a boss you need to make sure you are unfireable and that you are always adding value to your company or you will just be wasting time. So always do your best as anything else is just a waste of your time and energy.

 

3) Always be open to learning more

The journey to success is full of opportunities to learn. However we must be willing and open to the fact that we have to learn and seize the opportunities to learn. These can be lessons from our mistakes or valuable teachings from those smarter than us.

The important part of what was being repeated was to be open to listening and strive to learn. Clearly implying you will never know it all and there will be never-ending opportunities to learn for those who are open to learning. Learn to love learning.

 

4) Be happy, make time for life and enjoy what you are doing (Work/life balance)

Be happy and enjoy what you are doing. You spend almost half you waking day at work so it doesn’t make sense to hate it. Find where your passions lie and focus on exploiting those.

Also make sure you make time for family and life in general. Yes work is important and we should work hard but never at the expense of life itself. Everything in balance. If you work, work exceedingly hard and be ultra productive so that you have time for other things. Half hearted work will many things undone which only eat into your personal time. So enjoy what you do so that you work hard at it, which will leave you enough time to enjoy the finer things in life too. Build memories alongside success.

 

5) Be kind to those around you

Be kind to those around you or as one person put it: “my best career advice is ‘Don’t be a jerk”. Being mean might make some people feel powerful but it rarely gets you anywhere.

People work for people not for money so if you really want the best out of your team and you want them to go the extra mile then treat them with respect and they will repay it many times over. Of course at times we have to be firm but as a number of respected professions mentioned “praise openly, chastise privately”. We should not chastise simply to fulfil our egos.

It costs nothing to be kind and it can mean a lot to those around us so leave the ego at the door and try your best to work with humility and politeness.

 

6) Help others

I was very surprised by the number of posts impressing the need to give back at help others. One of the big keys to success to ensure you are helping those around you to succeed too. Your success directly proportional to the talents of those around you as none of us make it alone. If you help them to improve then naturally your team efforts are amplified too.

The simple process of teaching others helps reinforce learnings for yourself too, as you have a chance to really consolidate and reflect upon your knowledge. So the more you teach, the more precise your own knowledge becomes.

But there is also a little known benefit of helping others in that it really helps you to be happy. I explain more about this in my book – ‘Double Your Success As An Entrepreneur’ so I won’t go into detail here but it’s truly good for you to help others so don’t be shy to pay it forward with your knowledge and support.

 

Quite inspiring and I hope people not only contributed to also took the chance to learn too. I’ve listed some of the best replies below and I hope you also add your best advice (in 4 words or less!) in the comments section below.

 

Some of the best pick original answers to The Best Career Advice in Four Words:

 

Knowledge is Power, Learn!

Work Hard and Learn

Service, integrity, commitment, passion

You can achieve anything

Don’t neglect your family

It’s a journey

Surround yourself with wisdom

Have work life balance

Find a way

You gotta earn it

Publish your goals

Always be networking

Mentoring builds you

Play to your strengths

Focus + Action = Desired Outcome

Eye on the Target

Better respected, than liked

Never give up

Be your best

Be nice to people

Coffee every morning

Reach for the stars

You’re not always right!

No one’s a superhero

Love what you do

Listen. Look. Think. Act

Show up on time.

listen to understand

Slow feet, don’t eat

Lead by example

Don’t Sell Yourself Short

Believe In YOURSELF

Build trust through transparency

Don’t waste time waiting

Have confidence, be courageous

Be teachable. Take notes

Treat everyone with respect

Always have a plan

Expect more of yourself

Risks equal reward

Learn, Retain, Apply & Repeat!

Do the right thing!

Don’t panic

Provide more value

Be happy

Embrace change

always try your best

Average isn’t good enough

Be on time

Act with integrity always

believe anything is possible

Go after your dreams.

Better sleep on it

Be quick and professional

Be kind and genuine

Never burn a bridge!

Never give up EVER

Always strive for greatness

Just go for it

Provide more value

Don’t panic

Embrace change

Average isn’t good enough

hard work and determination.

Stand by your principles

work hard play harder

Work hard, be nice!

Believe in your abilities

Come early, leave late

Do more than expected

Don’t Talk, Act.

Give more take less

Keep a positive attitude

Listen, learn, lead

Work hard, help co-workers

be flexible and adapt

Be known for delivering

Get off your butt

Always keep your word

Have A Reason Why

Think before you speak

Don’t hold a grudge

Make a difference

Leave your comfort zone

Make a Difference

always have a carrot

Seek First to Understand

Make time for family

Hire character. Teach skills

Believe in your product

Better respected, than liked

Wake up smiling

Work hard Give back

Pay it forward. Mentor

Position yourself for success

under promise over deliver

Build your A team

Less talk, more action

Don’t date co-workers

Work smarter not harder

Follow your gut

Add value every day

Listen carefully. Assume nothing.

Never accept failure

Practice what you preach

Morals, Values & Ethics

Find a good mentor

Work well with others

Learn from every mistake.

Listen, Observe, Plan, Do

Lead, don’t boss

Listen, Learn, Lead, Mentor

Praise publicly. Chastise privately

Keep track of accomplishments

No progress without change

Stay curious and listen

Pursue your passions now

Create and deliver value.

Trust your Gut

Your character is everything

Don’t be a jerk.

Receive mentoring, Give mentoring

Think it through first

See the big picture

Don’t worry. Be happy

Pick your battles

Always ask good questions

Make it an Adventure

Do your best everyday

you’ll never get perfection

Follow passion not money

Make the right connections

Work harder than yesterday

Be brave.

Never stop the chase

Make every day awesome

Think like a leader

It’s not about you

Always have high expectations

Make it happen

Listen to your heart

think outside the box

Be comfortable being challenged

Leaders are followers too

Keep an open mind!

elevate those around you

Stay Humble Hustle Hard

never forget to grow

you can do better

Keep pushing on

Learn from your mistakes

Make time for family

Leverage your network

Help your Customer succeed

Be proactive, not reactive.

Make each day count!

Ignore the noise

Do or do not

Pick your battles carefully

Know when to listen

Always invest in yourself

Listen without your ego

Be ready to chase

Never doubt your abilities

Patience is a virtue

No one is irreplaceable

Learn how to fail

pause before pressing send

Be willing to change

Surround yourself with success

Think before you speak

People work for people

Advance your customer’s agenda.

Not work if fun

Make a difference daily

Make it happen. Now

Every job teaches something

Behave as you believe

Always adapt to change

Love your progression

Be a team player

Do one thing well

Know the gatekeepers

Always remain humble

Happiness before money

Win the lottery

Luck = Preparation + Opportunity + Action

“No” is a challenge

Don’t be a jerk

Practice what you preach

Hire better than yourself

pause before pressing send

Your character is everything

Believe and You’ll Achieve

Life long learning

Stay hungry Feed others

 

Some my own career advice in 4 words or less, which I added for fun:

Arise after each setback

Work diligently; be unfireable

Make a difference

Work to your Strengths

Always have goals

Don’t step over others

Build memories alongside success

Don’t neglect your health

Everything in balance

Don’t be scared to break the rules (see what I did there?!)

Sometimes less is more

Be a value adder

 

Have any you wish to add?

Then be sure to share them in the comments below:

 

1 Comment

  • Fabian Brandenburg Posted 13th April 2016 10:50 am

    What a good list to check yourself.. I think everybody can find some things in here to do better, Thanks!

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