21 simple steps to follow based on my personal experience.

  1. Be authentic. Be yourself. Be glamorous.
  2. Work in global teams with different nationalities. It teaches you the world is colorful and you learn to read between the lines.
  3. Learn one or two languages besides English. Practice by reading comics, watch foreign films and most importantly try to get a few friends who are native speakers.
  4. Team Up, Build Partnerships, and Find a Mentor. Nobody can do it alone. The Ecosystem is the new Hierarchy.
  5. Be curious and interested. Nobody wants to be an outdated Wikipedia.
  6. Build an authentic Brand Identity of yourself and curate your social presence on LinkedIn, FB, Instagram, Twitter, Renren, WeChat, etc.
  7. Never stop learning. Not just functional learning but also life learning.
  8. Be different. Try to find your USP and live it day by day. Jonnie is a creative problem solver. Hannah is passionate about ROI for customer implementations etc.
  9. Be passionate about something outside work and show it. Art, Music, Whiskey Tasting, French Cooking and yes even Ball Room Dancing.
  10. Stay on top of geopolitical issues, monetary issues, sports, lifestyle issues, anything… business and social become one the higher up you get.
  11. Hard Work, Discipline and Practice are not old fashioned. What did Steve Jobs tell us…Practice over and over and over…
  12. Have fun in what you do. You don’t want to burn out in your prime age.
  13. Don’t ask for money, bonuses or promotions. Ask for new challenges in your work and to be sent abroad.
  14. If you are in finance, try to learn marketing. If you are in marketing, try to learn logistics. Silos are out, Cross is in.
  15. Do something for the community. Free of charge and no strings attached. It just feels good to help others and see their smile.
  16. Have a friend, husband, wife, partner or even a dog that supports you and shares your dream, passions and failures.
  17. Think Big and Take Risk. Great Business People and true Artists go to the edge and sometimes beyond.
  18. Fail and Start again. It’s ok, no, it’s a must. Ask for forgiveness rather than permission.
  19. Its ok to be insecure and ask for advice. The higher up in the ranks, the lonelier and scarier it gets.
  20. Always hire people who are better than you on the way to the top, unless you want to stay grounded or brace for impact.
  21. Be humble and don’t take yourself too seriously but stay hungry and driven. People want to be around nice folks and get inspired.