How Do You Define Success?

The word success means different things to people. Perhaps it symbolizes money and what it can buy (a BMW or a Jaguar). Perhaps it signifies personal fulfillment and self-esteem. Often, it is a combination of achieving material wealth and personal happiness.

Wouldn’t it be nice to enjoy what you are doing while the money rolls in? Wouldn’t be nice to work at a “labor of love” rather than to receive a mere weekly paycheck?

Not many people can say that they love their work. So I challenge Anton readers to think “outside the box.” As a college professor at Nassau Community College, I often joke with my students and ask “What will I do when I graduate?”

Of course, I have been teaching at the college level for 40 years. I wouldn’t want to have it any other way. I find most Nassau Community College students to be not just youthful in age but willing and eager to learn. They (you) have an entire future to look forward to… so if a mistake is made, so what? Time is on your side.

You know, there are only three types of people in the world. Those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who wonder what happened. Where do you fit in?

Let’s face facts. Be honest with yourself. Are you an individual whose dreams are nothing more than fantasies? Do you think about being a self-starter, plan for it, even pray for it, only to see your dream never become a reality? Why?

I believe that some of us are not focused enough and lack the passion, commitment and enthusiasm required to take control.

On the other hand, some of you will resolve your inner doubts and conflicts. You will make up your mind to do it. Yes, it may be daunting and frightening because it is a personal challenge. And it’s a decision only you can make…not your parents or your girlfriend or boyfriend. You are in total control.

Remember to think positive…think big. Anything is possible and if it’s impossible, it will take just a little longer to achieve.

Professor Mandel’s Five Attributes To Success

Self Confidence

People evaluate you by their perception of your worth. Your actions and words should reflect a strong belief in yourself.


To be successful you have little choice but to know your product, service and competition inside and out. Don’t come to the table unless you are ready to play hard.


Believe in your inevitability to be a success and expend that drive to reach your goal.


Seek out positive thinking people who can inspire you to reach your goals. IGNORE individuals who aren’t achieving in their own limited world.


The only difference between those of us who are marginal in our success and those who are supreme is our level and degree of aspiration.


Jack Kent Mandel is a professor of marketing at Nassau Community College. He is the recipient of the prestigious Outstanding Teacher Award conferred by the NYS Association of Two—Year Colleges. He is also the recipient of the NCC Faculty Distinguished Achievement Award.

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Jack K. Mandel
Jack K. Mandel is a professor at Nassau Community College.

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