If you're ready to take your songs out of the shower and onto the stage for success, here are a few thoughts. We all have experienced the STAR performers in life. Those that can belt out a song on stage, hit the home run, play a lead part or consistently bring home big accounts. You marvel at how they seem to get beyond themselves to perform at an elevated level. Unfazed by the normal inhibitions that affect us all.

In business these star performers are called by various nicknames: Elephant Hunters, Brag Book Holders, Rhino Chasers, The Land and Expand Force, Whale Boaters, Big Dog People, Game Changers, Alpha People or Bright Stars.

An athlete or stage performer has the luxury of practice time. Time when you can hone your skills or talent through repetition until it becomes second nature. That practice pushes you beyond your inhibitions. The rest of us operate in real time. In todays fast electric speed world, there is little time for practice. If you are going to be a bright star, you have to hone your skills on the fly. 

The first step to success is finding the courage to take a risk. If you're unsure of your footing in business, try something new and challenging outside of business. This can be as simple as joining Toastmasters, picking up a new hobby or joining a group striving for change. The confidence and social interaction skills you gain put you closer to moving onto the main stage in business.

Understand your inhibitions. Recognize that most are ones everyone shares. Write down each one, with notes on how they hold you back, your fears and possible strategies to overcome them. Getting them out in open, makes them less powerful. Work on eliminating your critical self talk. If you concentrate on your weaknesses, you will fail to recognize all the opportunities in front of you and miss them.

Identify the winning teams at work. Those who are taking on the big projects. Join them as a team member. They represent real opportunity for advancement. You probably have more to add to those groups than you think. List the special skills you have and see if they will fit in the group contributing to its success. Imagine a role for yourself.

Learning as much as possible about your field of endeavor is the best way to build that list of skills. Ones that will make you more valuable to any business effort you join. This can range from organization to technical ability. Knowledge gives you confidence to take that assignment which is just beyond your current skills.

Learn the basics of good interaction with other people such as body language. It’s surprising how knowing these skills shifts thinking from inhibitions to techniques you can employ for success.

Observe the actions of the bright stars in your organization. Everything from how they dress to how they interface with others. Take note of any special techniques they use to be successful over and over again. Often, this is as simple as the ability to objectively look at a business situation and take action.

Don’t worry so much about people liking you. Reaching for new success levels will always bring with it some jealousy, critiques and skepticism from others. In the end though, those that are most liked are the successful ones. The ones that took chances.

Seeks partners with your growth goals. If you’re a small business owner, the quickest way to get to the big leagues is to joint venture with other companies. The combining of different specialties gives you opportunity to compete with much larger firms. The same is true if you're an employee. Find others who want to get ahead and have skills that add to yours. Working together you can volunteer for that special projects or develop new ones for consideration.

Be vulnerable and recognize you may not win all the time. Don’t be afraid to take on what looks like the impossible mission. Volunteer for it. If you fail, there will still be glory in it. There are no STARS who have not fallen once in a while during their careers. The secret to their ultimate success is that they risked again.

Some will never want to sing on stage and be a star, keeping their talent safe in the shower. Thats certainly fine. Over time though, you will think more and more about the opportunities you missed by not grabbing a chance at success just beyond you. So its always good to learn to read the music of business, improve your voice, sing out loud and welcome the audience in to hear your song.

David Young Contemporary Explorer

Further Readings:
7 Ways to Overcome Shyness and Social Anxiety by David Stanley

5 Ways to Be a Star Performer at Work by Maurie Backman