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Success Rule # 3 – Volunteer for more work

Yup that’s right. I find, when asked, most people WANT more work – as long as it’s meaningful and purposeful. When possible look for those opportunities. It’s an opportunity to contribute to the team, to learn something new, and to gain an appreciation … and greater understanding perhaps of the bigger picture. When you volunteer you have a better chance of doing things YOU want to do. Choose carefully though, know why you are volunteering.

I have no doubt I am where I am today, because of the projects and additional duties I volunteered for throughout my career. While serving in the Air Force and going through Pararescue training 27 years ago, I would volunteer to be the first to try a new drill or exercise. A risky venture in that I often failed. I also graduated #1 in my class. While attending Officer Training School, I would volunteer for details that needed to be done. I was selected to be the Cadet Vice Wing Commander. While stationed in Germany I volunteered to be our unit security officer. As a result, and as a Second Lieutenant, I had influence with the Commander and other unit leaders. When I flew with AWACS, I would go around to different staff offices and ask if there were projects they needed help with. I learned a lot about the different staff jobs in the organization, ones I would be interested in doing given the opportunity, others I knew I wanted to avoid. When the opportunity presented itself, not only was I ready, but the decision makers knew me, my work and according to them, it was why I was selected. Eventually I served on the Wing Commanders staff where I became the lead trainer for quality issues (TQM), leadership, professional development training, and project management. Being the founder and CEO of Leader Development Institute was no accident.

Volunteer, at home, at work, and in your community. You’ll be a better person for it.


Be sure to check out the other “Success Rules” below:

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