The Six P’s (Keys) to Success

Recently it was my honor to host a group of more than 30 female leaders from 12 colleges for the “Breakfast with the President” series held by the Massachusetts American Council on Education—National Network for Women Leaders (ACE-NNWL).

It was wonderful to have such an accomplished group of women on campus and to be able to share our experiences and encourage each
other as female college leaders.

As host of the event, I was asked to share about my “Life’s Lessons from Inside (and Beyond) the Academy.” The key focus of my talk was what I consider the six keys (or Six P’s) to success.

Passion – If you don’t love what you’re doing, do something else.

Planning – As is often said, if you don’t know where you’re going, any path will take you there. Consider what you want to achieve in your personal and professional life.

Perseverance – Develop the focus and have the “grit” to carry it out. Be willing to adjust your goals as needed.

Performance – Results matter. If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it. If your manager doesn’t hold you to performance goals, set your own and communicate them.

Play – Consider what brings you joy. Surprisingly, even as an equestrian, a hobby I love, I have learned a few lessons in leadership. For example, the importance of focusing beyond the jump, of applying firm and steady pressure to the horse, and being willing to adapt to the horse’s reactions.

Positive attitude – Demonstrate a positive attitude about your abilities and your organization. If you don’t believe in these, how can you possibly expect others to? During an interview at Nichols, we often ask the question – “What makes you think you’re the right person for this job?”

I hope that you will find some of these tips helpful as you move forward in achieving your own goals.

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