Evolving the Definition of Success in the U.K. and Germany

October 22, 2017

When I was growing up, pop culture perpetuated the idea that success only came from power, money and possessions. Whether it was Gordon Gekko ruling Wall Street or Jerry Maguire being shown the money, the idea of achieving success revolved around hitting the financial jackpot.

Since then, the world has been redefined in every way possible. We watch all our shows when we want to without the need to tune in at a specific time, clouds now store our pictures rather than frames, and apps help us find new partners, hail cabs and connect us with our (once elusive) favourite celebrities. But is the same true for our definition of success – has that evolved too? 

New LinkedIn research in the UK reveals that more than a quarter of people (29 percent) think that traditional perceptions of success are outdated, and old status symbols like six figure salaries and fast cars are not the only way to define success. Rather, people are also valuing time for hobbies, work-life balance and starting a family. Like many things in life, success can take various forms and mean different things to everyone, whether that means spending most of your time as the CEO of a company, or the CEO of your family, and anything in-between.

The fact of the matter is, more than one in four Brits (26 percent) admit they don’t feel successful, and more than a third (34 percent) told us they wish success was perceived as less important by society. That gave us an idea: If we opened up the conversation and explored the many different meanings of success, would this help people understand that success is in everyone, and that their own version is attainable?

This question fuelled the launch of LinkedIn’s new campaign in the UK and Germany, #ThisIsSuccess, which aims to help our members and the wider workforce define success for themselves. Over the next few weeks we’ll be taking this message straight to the streets of London and Berlin, encouraging people to consider what success means to them.

So, whether your version of success is making it back for bath time or having the time to play in your five-a-side football team, being your own boss or owning your own home, we encourage you to share and celebrate what it means to you.

Join the conversation using #ThisIsSuccess.