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Courage, Contribution, and Your Career Advancement

By David Cox | February 15, 2021

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Courage is often required when employees endeavor to contribute to their organization. 

Courage is not always about heroic actions with life and death consequences. Sometimes, it takes courage to contribute to the organization and risk failure at work.

What you contribute to the organization will ultimately determine your opportunities for career advancement. However, as an employee, it may take courage to make new decisions, assert yourself, share new ideas and risk others’ criticisms.

Here is a sample list of things you can do to contribute at work, but each may require you to demonstrate some courage.

  1. Speak up and ask questions
  2. Offer suggestions about other, better ways to get things done
  3. Insist on obtaining facts to guide in making decisions
  4. Take initiative
  5. Build contacts and relationships
  6. Take time to get input from others
  7. Make a presentation at work, despite your fear of public speaking
  8. Speak out against harassment
  9. Strive to solve problems
  10. See yourself in a new role – not as a lackey, but as an expert in your job

Remember: No one is successful all the time. So, when you fail – and you will fail, it may seem devastating to your credibility at that moment.

In those moments, remember the words of Winston Churchill, who once said, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts.”

How many humiliating failures have you seen individuals go through in the workplace? I doubt you can think of many. The truth is that our failures are not the first thing on the minds of everyone around us. In fact, most of the fears that hold us back are groundless.

Finding the courage to try again, in the face of failure, may prove to be your greatest career challenge.

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About the Author: David Cox

David Cox is the Principle Owner of He is a career generalist, having served in six different career fields over the past 35 years. David writes to encourage those who choose to follow their varied interests by seeking opportunities to apply their multidisciplinary training and experiences to develop their current career role