When I was visiting Stockholm recently, I had an inspirational visit to the Abba museum. When I think of the 70s, the music from Abba is one of the first things I think of. They were icons in the 70s, how did they become so successful? Here are four keys...
1 Get in the right place early (or as early as possible).
Agnetha, Frida, Benny and Bjorn were all singing and performing very early in their life. Indeed Frida said she never started singing because she had always sang. It’s like the players at Wimbledon who start playing tennis aged 3 or 4, you can still make it big when you start later, but starting earlier of course gives you a headstart. So getting in the right place for your gifts, talents and abilities is key, and the sooner the better.
What if you are in a job or career that you hate, or that you don’t feel you are suited to? Go and talk to a career coach, do some profiling tests, work out as quickly as possible, where would be a better fit for you and then change direction. This is important because success in your career is about being in the right arena, If you are doing a job you aren’t suited to it’s not only a recipe for unhappiness and being unfulfilled, it also makes it much harder to be successful.
2 Develop your network.
Connect with the right people. Abba were all involved in the music industry early on and were meeting people and so they met, connected and started working with each other early on. If you are in the right arena for your talent and abilities, connect with people, make sure to you are meeting the talented people in your industry. As well a great potential friendships and networking opportunities, you never know where these opportunities will lead...
3 Be Determined.
If you don’t make it big initially don’t worry. Abba came third in 1972 with Ring Ring. They kept going and in 1974 they won Eurovision with Waterloo. They did a great recording, then went to the awards ceremony feeling good, they know they had a chance to win and they did. It’s about being persistent and continuing to do your best. You have to be in the game to win the game. And then it's about enjoying yourself.
4 Have Fun.
Having fun is really important, there is a saying if you love what you do you’ll never work a day in your life. Abba enjoyed themselves, they had a few serious songs, but for the most part when we think of Abba we think of those joyous, upbeat songs, with incredible energy, positivity and optimism, such as 'Dancing Queen'.
We remember them for that happiness, that enthusiam, that playfulness and energy. Abba had a lot of fun together, they had a ball and they always said they would finish, when they stopped having a good time, and they did finish at that point. They left on a high, which is why they left such a legacy of joyful, happy music.
Which of these can you apply today to be more successful in your career?