Wonder what separates the successful national or international superstar from an equally talented local or regional musician? We made a list of personality traits almost every successful artist has. You’ll notice musical talent didn’t make the list: although obviously important, without the other ten qualities successful artists would never have been heard by someone who could advance their careers in the first place. As for luck, “luck” is what you create when you combine drive and consistent action with the art of good timing…not something that just “happens” to you.
Successful recording artists…
1. …have tremendous Focus. They have a clear understanding of their goals and don’t get sidetracked by outside influences, people, or problems when pursuing their goals.
2. …have extraordinary Tenacity. No matter what obstacles pop up–and there are always many–they don’t give up.
3. …are Decisive. Successful artists think things through thoroughly but quickly, and they don’t change their minds after a decision is reached. They may question it in their own minds but are willing to live with the consequences, and they don’t ask for a do-over. (This is probably the Number One area where less-successful artists go wrong.)
4. …have Vision. Like good chess players, successful artists are able to see ahead to the next several moves and can see what outcomes may result from each option.
5. …don’t take business personally. Successful artists are able to separate the business aspect of their careers from the creative side and make them co-exist peacefully.
6. …have Marketing Sense. They may not admit to it publicly or even know the terminology, but nearly every super-successful artist with more than two successful albums has an innate concept of branding, how they fit in to the music marketplace, and who their audience is. Superstar artists who have achieved longevity are especially adept at this. (It’s not just their managers; it takes marketing skill to get a good manager’s attention.)
7. …know when to ask for help, and know who is the best person to ask. They may not know how to get hold of them, but they know who to get.
8. …surround themselves with the best, most talented people. The definition of “best” depends on the artist’s own definition of success. For some, it’s the people with the most proven financial success. For others, it’s the people who are successful in terms of numbers and are easy to work with. Docile artists sometimes surround themselves with more aggressive people. It all depends what works for each artist.
9. …have Common Sense. Sometimes this is developed over time, but successful artists don’t achieve longevity or keep their money by doing dumb things.
10. …are usually Workaholics but love their work so much they don’t pay attention to the clock. Lazy people don’t succeed in the music industry; there’s always someone coming up who’s willing to work harder.