Your Legacy

To assess the legacy you are leaving you should thank authors for the tips and ask yourself the following:

If I left today, what would people remember about me and my work?
A legacy is, by definition, a memory -- something left behind for others to follow, to emulate, to use. What are you leaving with the people with whom you interact today? What did you leave with people yesterday...last week? What do you want to leave with them tomorrow?

How does the work I am doing affect others -- is it the effect I want?
It's important to look not only at what you are doing, but at what others are doing as a result of your actions. This is a far more sophisticated measure of success, and a much more difficult one to measure, but it's worth the effort.

Is what I am doing helping someone else?
Making a difference is key, and the best way to make a difference is to ensure that your actions are in the interest of others. This not only leaves a positive legacy and impression long-term, but is also very rewarding short-term.

How well do I tie my current actions and projects to long-term results?
Legacies are not built in a single action or in the short term -- they take consistent behaviors over a long period of time to develop, to deepen and to become established.

Does the work I am producing truly satisfy me? Have I done my best?
Does it pass my own qualitative innovation test? Have I really stretched? Have I learned something in the process? If you were your boss, would you approve of what you are producing? To really do a good job, you must first satisfy yourself.

Will I brag about it next year? In five years? Will I brag about it to my grandchildren?

Can you see yourself with a grandchild on your knee, telling the story about what you accomplished in 2012? You only brag about things when you've pushed hard and made some leap into the unknown. When you've made a difference, you feel comfortable telling others about it.

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