11 CEOs Share the One Thing That Made Them Successful

Advice is a powerful thing. If you look closely at some of the most successful people, it’s rare that they’ve made it to where they are without heeding some well-advised tips from the wise businesspeople who helped mentor them along the way.

While we can’t offer you a personal mentor, we did take the time to ask several flourishing CEOs for their best piece of advice when it comes to paving a successful career path. Here’s what 11 CEOs had to say on killing it at your job.

Don’t compare yourself

“Focus on your own path, your own people and your own company. Don’t worry about what others are doing around you. If you believe in your market, team and product, you will ultimately succeed.”Mareza Larizadeh, CEO of Pulsd

Don’t forget to have fun

“While it’s important to be focused and work hard, it’s also important to have fun. Celebrate accomplishments with your team, and make sure everyone on your team is invested in the same outcomes for your business.”Morris Levy, co-founder and CEO of The Yard, NYC’s Luxury Office Collective

Always ask for what you want

“The worst you can hear is no.”Kerry Cooper, CEO of Choose Energy

Choose a path you enjoy

Have fun. You have to love what you do. I work 12 hours a day, six days a week, but if you love what you’re doing and are having fun, then it is never work.”Jonathan Fornaci, CEO of TruFusion

Take action

“Don’t be afraid to fail; oftentimes, success is just on the other side of your fears. It’s better to make mistakes and learn from them so you know how to move forward than to get stuck and not take action. Remember to also keep evaluating and reflecting as you do so. Take leaps in the direction you want to go. Always stay true to who you are and what you stand for.”Payal Kadaki, founder of ClassPass

Be brave 

Focus on courage over confidence. So many people emphasize confidence, the feeling that you can do something, but the problem with confidence is that it’s fragile. Screw up or fail once or twice, and how confident can you be? And if all you do is put merit in that self belief, are you going to be open to being wrong or learning from experiences? But courage, the ability to do what you think is right, regardless of how you feel, is what you need to cultivate to make any progress in any part of life. Courage is what you’ll need whenever you face any challenge. Confidence will only fail you.”John Turner, CEO and Founder of QuietKit

Select a great tribe

“Set aggressive goals, hustle hard and surround yourself with successful people who can guide you along the way.” Jason Reid, CEO and Co-Founder of Giftagram

Be friendly

“Make friends before you need them. Jobs and job leads can come from anywhere, so be nice to everyone along the way. I have had some of my best introductions from people in non-traditional ways. My hairdresser has clients who can be helpful, people who worked on our yard knew key people to connect me to. I met a terrific recruiter standing in line for the restroom at a conference. Always make a great impression. You just never know who can help and who they know.” Paige Arnof-Fenn, founder and CEO of Mavens & Moguls

Don’t avoid the hard stuff

Always be upfront. If you have to deal with something, deal with it head on and right away. Make it a priority so it doesn’t drain you. We usually leave these things for the end of the day or last on our list, and the anticipation of what could go wrong can be overwhelming. Deal with issues as they come up in the most honest, upfront and urgent way.” Rachel Charlupski, CEO of The Babysitting Company

Think bigger

“Do something you feel passionate about. You can’t compete against people who love what they do if you don’t. Women need to think big. If it your own company, plan for higher sales, raise more money. If you work for someone else, ask for a bigger salary and the better title. We get closed out and we underachieve because we don’t think big enough” Sarah Kugelman, founder and president of skyn ICELAND

Jump in

“Don’t wait for the perfect time to do anything in life, because that time will never come. If you have been thinking about doing anything in your life, whether it is to start your own business or to exercise, you should start now. A lot of people fall into the trap of waiting for that perfect time when everything is right to start. Unfortunately, that time will never come and they will be waiting forever. The only sign you need to start any activity is your own thoughts. If you have been thinking of starting, then that is the sign that you should start.” -Jesse Harrison, founder and CEO of Zeus Legal Funding

Danielle Page is the founder of ThisisQuarterlife.com, a blog that provides necessary information for navigating the awkward phase of adulthood known as “quarterlife.” Danielle’s work has been featured on Cosmo, Woman’s Day, Your Tango, Bustle, The New York Times, Thought Catalog, Elite Daily and the Huffington Post.