Ever wondered what it is that drives super-successful women? Dr Jude Miller Burke does, and she grilled more than 100 female millionaires for her book, The Millionaire Mystique. Here she reveals the gems she discovered. Take notes...
1. They avoid 'neggy' people
The majority of women who became successful quickly cite incredibly supportive partners. Toxic relationships are rarely left at home—if you have a partner who criticises you regularly, or a best friend constantly causing drama—it will erode your self-esteem and impact your working life too. Surround yourself with people who support and really care about you.
2. They ditch the 'OMG' language
Self-made millionaires avoid dramatic language—words such as 'never' or 'always' don't feature in their vocabulary because, as leaders, they want people to feel calm and trust their abilities. Using dramatic or emotionally-laden language causes anxiety in people around us, so they are less likely to have confidence in us. State the facts and position yourself as a calming influence.
3. They argue
Sixty percent of the women interviewed described themselves as 'argumentative' and others said that they are comfortable arguing a point to closure. Learning to be assertive is vital for achieving success, but it means ditching your hang-ups—worrying if you've upset somebody by speaking your mind is detrimental (that is, provided you remain polite and respectful, of course). Lose 'I don't mind' from your vocabulary too—take a stance. You'll waste less time.
4. They keep a distance from colleagues
While most of the women interviewed are friendly and keen to build relationships with colleagues, they all maintain a line between work friends and non-work friends. None of them get too close to colleagues; they'd never talk about marriage problems or friend dramas at work, for example. Instead, they manage their emotions (yes, that includes not crying at work). That's what people respect—and what ultimately leads to promotions.
5. They are diary freaks
Self-made millionaires have a schedule for everything and are incredibly disciplined about sticking to them. They know at the beginning of each week whom they will be with on which night. Ensuring everything from meetings to free time scheduled means you're less likely to burn out, and you'll work as efficiently as you possibly can.
6. They have a 'dream team'
Every single millionaire I've met has a team of advisors—from financial experts to friends—whose opinions they really trust. Remember, there's no way you can possibly know everything, so speak to people with experience in the areas you're unfamiliar with. Don't be put off by cost—for example, an accountant doesn't have to be hugely expensive if you pay hourly, and visit them once or twice a year, but they can save you a lot of money.
7. They check their bank balance
Millionaires never ignore their finances—no matter what the situation. They constantly review their budgets, logging expenses daily so they know exactly what's coming in or going out of their account at any given time. In doing so, you'll be able to see clearly what you can and can't afford. All of the millionaires avoid 'princess syndrome' too (making unrealistic demands or spending more than they can afford). Instead, they only splashed out on expensive cars or handbags after reaching financial security.
8. They log off Facebook
Each millionaire is so committed to getting the job done that they often turn up early to work and stay late, and are mindful of time-wasting, so they don't take long lunches or use Facebook at their desk. How far can you expect to go if you're snooping on your ex on FB?
9. They get physical
Every single one of the millionaires has a physical outlet to keep themselves centred. They range from team sports to meditation and outdoor activities—all of which have been proven to reduce stress. No matter how busy they are, they do this regularly, sometimes as much as twice a day.
10. They give themselves a friggin' break
Without exception, all the millionaires see failure as part of success; 70 percent have experienced career 'detours' such as not getting the job they wanted or being made redundant. Don't expect to have a 'linear career'—be open to change. And when you do fail, be compassionate towards yourself. Made a mistake in a meeting? Who cares. Start getting comfortable with failure.
* The Millionaire Mystique by Dr Jude Miller Burke published by Nicholas Brealey Publishing.