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What it needs to be successful

Everyone wants to become successful. It is indeed hard, but it is not impossible. Unless you have a right mindset; a successful mindset, you are long to go. Many bits of article you read out there are giving you tips and tricks on how to be successful, yet you are not even close to the success itself.

Here, I will give you a mind-blowing advices how to be successful based on what I have done in the past several years. First of all, we need to be in the same framework. What is success?

Success is the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.

Oxford Dictionary

So basically, I can say that every time you finished a task, you became a successful person, no matter how small it was, no matter how great it was. Many people love to say things such as I will become a successful man when I become a manager in that company, I will become a successful woman once I make my first million-dollar independently, I will be a successful person if I have my own company.

We are often set some goals far ahead and claim that once we hit those on, we will become successful. Then you think that after declaring such huge dreams, you will be motivated right away and start climbing up the ladder? No, you will not! The thing is that what it needs to be successful is definitely not how big your dreams are, or how motivated you are. You can see the fact that everyone wants to be successful, but see how many of them fail before reaching out the goal?

Basically, during my 2-year study and work abroad, I found that you need to have at least these two crucial matters:

Successful Mindset

It is not easy to have a successful mindset especially if your goal is so far ahead you. People tend to give up easily in the way through. For instance, you have a goal of becoming one of the people selected in Forbes 500. It seems impossible seeing the state you are currently in. That’s why we need many small goals if we want to achieve one big goal. The main purpose of these small goals is not to make you walking closer to your dream. Instead, they will give you the feeling of success every time you squished them. This constant feeling of success is WHAT YOU NEED TO ACHIEVE your last long-term goal. They give you motivation over and over so that you will not give up along the way, unlike ~98% people nowadays.

During my master’s degree, I have one big goal: attend ISMANAM or TMS conference, two of the largest conferences in the world for Materials scientists. The matter is, however, it is usually held in Europe or USA. To go there, you need a lot of money (I studied in South Korea) in which I personally did not have the money nor my laboratory was royal enough to give me free tickets to fly out of Asia (for international conferences we usually go to neighbouring countries such as Japan, China, Taiwan, or Indonesia). So I set that as my big goal. What I need to do is to become “good enough” then be able to convince my supervisor to pay for my flight.

Many obstacles happened. Most of them were caused by my own stupidity or my ignorance such as making my Professor angry since the first day I came to South Korea due to culture shock and manner matters. Therefore I set many small goals one by one: make-up with my Professor, then, learn as much as I can, more than any other person in the laboratory, then, show him a tremendous growth and capability, get one or two great achievements so that he will believe in me. In the first six-month, what I did was becoming a typical “very good student” because I knew that Professor is like a God, he is never wrong. Next, I became the foreman for one big project from POSCO, the largest steel company in South Korea. There I showed him that I can beat this project successfully. And subsequently, the project was done and finalized in POSCO with an outstanding score of 94 out of 100. I also presented the topic in Asia Pacific Society for Materials Research (APSMR) in Japan (2017), and won the best presentation award (1st place). That moment became my very first success in obtaining my Professor attention towards me. Then I set many small goals again and again, until one moment I could convince my Professor that if I can finish my manuscript for Nature Materials before thesis defence, my wish to attend an international conference in Europe would be granted. And guess what, I went to Italy in the summer of 2018. I can say that set a very long-term goal is good but IT WILL BE FUCKING DIFFICULT without any small goals followed it.

One good advice is you need to have your own ROAD MAP to achieve your final goal. Take it step-by-step, because you will not likely to lose the motivation and momentum in the middle of the road, and you can get to the goal line easier.

Good Mentors and Environment

In terms of people development, great mentors and a suitable environment will boost your chance to become a successful person. In many multi-national companies, management trainee programs or graduate development programs or so on are very common, especially in FMCG industries. In FMCG environment, everything is going fast, including the chain of products and the transition of the people inside the organization itself. They need to preserve their market share as well as to have people with a brilliant mindset who can offer many innovative and breakthrough ideas to sustain their company’s growth. To achieve this, they need one crucial strategy called “Mentorship”.

In Management Trainee program, we can be a manager in as fast as 3 years. To develop the trainees is a such short time, they need to provide managers with good leadership and mentorship mindset to teach those kids. This can be applied to us. If you want to become successful faster, I suggest you to find a mentor or surround yourself with constructive environment. There is to say that if you want to become a successful investor, then, go to investment trainings or classes, watch and learn financial planning videos everyday, as well as immerse yourself by trying to implement your knowledge into the real-world situation.

If you want go fast, go alone. But, if you want go far, go together. You will not definitely find a success in the one night. It is a combination of many hard works and tears, as well as sleepless nights due to praying and believing.

My mentors during my studies have helped me gain many achievements, scholarships, and beautiful experiences over the years. In addition, they have also taught me more about success — and what it looks like — than I could have ever figured out on my own. They showed me what it needs to become successful, and what is a success itself. Thank you, sir.

Couple months ago, I finished my master’s degree in South Korea and came back to Indonesia. Subsequently, I set a new goal for myself and will start climbing up again to reach my new long-term goals. Let’s begin our new journey.

Just you and me.

Agastya Prastita Mahendradhany, S.T., M.Eng., a Materials Engineer.

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