While technical excellence is relatively easy to achieve, in today’s world, success requires ongoing learning.

“Twenty years ago, you’d come out of university and that was the last time you’d ever have to learn anything. Now the half-life of knowledge is so short that you have to work continually to maintain your leading edge,” says career and self-leadership coach Briony Liber.

So whether you go back to university or find professional courses to attend, constant upskilling is vital.

What’s more difficult is developing your emotional quotient.

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“The World Economic Forum has forecast what skills will be most important over the next 10-15 years and all of them have to do with communication: being able to inspire and lead, creative thinking and agile learning. These are all soft skills; none of them are about being able to code or build robots,” explains Liber.

This is why, no matter where you are in your career, these 13 focus areas should be factored into your pursuit of excellence:

  1. Be curious and open to learning.
  2. Be committed and disciplined in developing yourself.
  3. Dedicate at least five to six hours a week to self-development.
  4. Find online learning courses, many of which are free.
  5. Watch TED talks and listen to audio books in the car, while cooking or doing chores.
  6. Connect with people and share different opinions.
  7. Get coaching and find a mentor.
  8. Put what you learn into practice.
  9. Keep self-motivating.
  10. Encourage excellence in your family, your friends and your colleagues, as their excellence will inspire you to greater excellence.
  11. Know what you want or need to excel at.
  12. Be disciplined through a plan of action and goals.
  13. Be consistent in implementing your plan.