At TCD, we’ve had many discussions about what makes a client, an agency, a brand, or a person a “success.” We have felt for some time that the traditional explanation of success doesn’t “fit” with what we are striving for, in our work and our lives.
Dictionary.com provides this definition of success:
- the favorable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavors; the accomplishment of one’s goals.
- the attainment of wealth, position, honors, or the like.
- a performance or achievement that is marked by success, as by the attainment of honors.
- a person or thing that has had success, as measured by attainment of goals, wealth, etc.
We think the first item on this list is closest to the mark, especially “the accomplishment of one’s goals.” But so often, goals are measured solely in the categories of wealth and fame. We would argue that there are other ways to accomplish objectives and achieve success, in the areas of career, spiritual fulfillment, and life purpose.
Albert Schweitzer wrote, “Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.” We look for opportunities to find joy in the way we live, every day.
How does this translate to our work lives? Often “success” in the design field is measured by developing trendy, cool designs, regardless of their effectiveness. We feel a greater sense of pride and success when our work achieves its objectives and produces results for our business partners, which is why “strategic solutions” is a critical part of our tagline. We reflected recently on other work-related successes:
We feel success when we create something that makes us proud. We feel success when we reach a breakthrough on a challenging project.
We feel success when we sidestep work to build relationships with clients. We feel success when our work makes a difference, when it positively affects people and our community.
We feel success when we unite as a team racing for the same goals. When one succeeds, we celebrate together.
Not every day is dominated by feelings of success, but the more we motivate each other to positively overcome challenges and give our best each day, the more we bring those feelings back to life. As a team, we are successful.
How do YOU define success?