Inner stillness, key to success

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By Brad Allen

October 7, 2015


The prospect of getting a job after graduation can be a daunting one; however, there are many resources on campus to help students develop themselves professionally and get started in their careers after college.

UW-Whitewater’s Career and Leadership Development services is one such resource available to students.

Director of Career and Leadership Development services at UW-Whitewater Ron Buchholz said the key to success is the T-Shaped professional concept, which describes a balance of skills and traits.

Ron Buchholz started working with Career Services at UW-Whitewater in 2005. He began working for the Career and Leadership Development program after two separate organizations on campus which merged in 2008, creating CLD. The basic functions of CLD date back to the 1970’s, according to Buchholz.

Many qualities are sought in the workplace, including a proper work ethic, good writing skills and the ability to demonstrate leadership, according to Buchholz.

“Everyone wants people who are passionate about what they do,” Buchholz said. “If it aligns with your career, then you’re excited to go to work. You’re not successful if you hate what you do.”

Freshman Shelly Bartoshevich said she believes time management is the most important value for both students and professionals to have.
“If you don’t manage time well, things won’t get done,” Bartoshevich said.

Senior Lukas Fischbach said that to him, success means being able to have all his personal goals set up and to achieve them all.
“I think students and professionals need to be ethical and work with integrity,” Fischbach said.

Junior Jacob Augustine said he feels communication skills is the most important professional value to have.

“When people can’t communicate about what’s going on, that’s when problems arise,” Augustine said.

CLD helps teach students how to speak in interviews professionally, write resumes, and find out more about what to do in order to secure a career path, according to Buchholz.

CEO and Founder of Genius Stone Partners Paul David Walker has his own tips for students looking to improve their skills and build their qualities both during and after college. Walker has written several books on the topics of leadership and success. His most recent book is titled “Invent Your Future – Starting with Your Calling.”

Walker runs a leadership consulting firm in Long Beach, California, which offers business and marketing strategies, personality tests, business advice and assistance with finding one’s true calling. Genius Stone Partners has been in business for approximately 30 years. Walker said he has worked with many large companies such as New York Life, SEARS, Pacific Mutual, Pacific Railroad and the City of Long Beach, California.

“I teach leaders this whole notion of inner stillness,” Walker said. “I teach them to develop themselves and to know the difference between their egos and intuitions. These feelings often feel the same to inexperienced leaders.”

CEOs must be highly involved in their company and be able to respond to the flow of cause and effect, Walker said. If you can’t handle that in a big company, you’re going to be very unhappy.

“You’ve got to know yourself, that’s the first step. Know your business, yourself and your team,” Walker said. “Once you know who you are or what you’re trying to create, you have to paint a compelling picture of that to incur support.”

The next step is to build commitment and find a collaborative team of support that is committed to each other’s’ success, according to Walker.

Surround yourself with people who give you honest feedback and invite feedback, because the most successful people are always watching how people respond to them, Walker said.

“You’ve got to have feedback, and you’ve got to have a coach,” Walker said. “Unless you’re perfect – then you can start a religion.”

The final imperative is mastering inner stillness and focusing on being happy, according to Walker. Students should focus on improving themselves, and college is a great place to do so.

“The first thing I do in my book and my job is help people explore who they really are,” Walker said. “Early in life, it was my job to live my father’s dream. I am the oldest son of the oldest son. I managed my brothers growing up.”

Walker said he originally wanted to be a physicist. After he “blew up” the physics lab in college, his physics teacher told him, “When all else fails, read the directions.” This is when he realized a career in physics was not for him.

During the first month, his book sold over 350 copies. Walker said he receives 90 percent of the revenue through his publisher, Highpoint Executive Publishing.
“It’s a great book for a graduate student of a university or high school,” Walker said.

President and publisher of Highpoint Executive Publishing Michael Roney said the book was a really good fit for his company. His company mainly publishes books on the topics of leadership, management and self-help.

“There’s thousands of management books out there, but [Walker’s] book is very unique. It looks inward and encourages the reader to find out more about themselves and how they can be successful,” Roney said. “It’s an extremely valuable approach.”

Highpoint Executive Publishing is looking for authors who have high quality books with ground-breaking material, Roney said. It is unusual for someone with Walker’s business credentials to be in touch with a deeper perspective.

Paul David Walker also has some tips for students looking to write their own books:

  1. Only write about something you know or have direct experience with. Be an expert at something.
  2. Get a writing coach and learn to improve narrative. There is no substitute for practice.
  3. Find a target audience that can relate to it. Do not write only for yourself.
  4. Use analogies to bridge up from initial understanding.