Chinese New Year is round the corner and organisations are preparing for the Year of the Horse even as we move on from the Year of the Snake.

While working towards achieving your New Year resolutions, here are five H-O-R-S-E qualities you should embody to fast-track your path to success:


A friend in need is a friend indeed. There is no better way to make a friend than to be helpful.

Look around you. There are always people who need that extra helping hand, whether it is a colleague who is having trouble with the photocopy machine or your subordinate who needs a little guidance on his responsibilities.

Scientific studies have shown that having a genuine desire, without motive or the expectation to be repaid, increases personal happiness and productivity significantly.

So walk the extra mile with your colleague and build a relationship that transcends the workplace. It will benefit both of you. Plus, your helpfulness may be reciprocated when you need it most.


The New Year is always the time when most of us have a healthy dose of optimism. We feel energised and motivated by a fresh new start.

This is the season when New Year resolutions are made and challenges are confronted with zest and enthusiasm.

However, it is even more important to maintain this optimism all year round, even when the routine sets in.

More often than not, you find that your optimism tapers down a few months after the New Year, having come to the realisation that your circumstances have not changed.

It is crucial that you recognise that your situation does not have to maintain its status quo; you can constantly improve and enjoy your life if you keep up your optimism and match it with tangible action.


Qualities that you need to get on the fast track to being successful is reliability and accountability to people around you and yourself.

Regardless of where you are in life, you are entrusted with responsibilities. It could be leading a project team or being a spouse or a parent.

You need to be reliable for the people around you, just as you need the support of others to achieve your goals.

At the same time, be accountable to yourself. Having set New Year resolutions is only half the battle.

Do you have tangible, actionable steps to take to achieve these goals? Are your goals measurable?

It is important to have measurable goals because you cannot succeed if you set vague goals like, “I am going to grow personally this year” or “I am going to be a better person this year”.

How will you measure your success?


Be sensitive to the needs of others. In the midst of the joy, optimism and festivities of the New Year, be aware that your colleagues may be experiencing a tough time, such as nursing a sick relative or finding themselves in unfortunate circumstances.

These are the people who need your care and concern the most, even though they do not explicitly ask for it.

Learn to read the behavioural clues of the people around you and do not hesitate to show concern when needed.


Finally, run a daily check on yourself to ensure that your energy levels are high. You need to adopt an energetic, can-do mindset in order to succeed and be happy.

Only when you are pumped up and excited can you be helpful, optimistic, reliable and sensitive.

Remember, the New Year is a great time to move forward. If not now, when?


Article by Looi Qin En, chief brand and marketing strategist of Training Edge International. He has successfully transformed businesses with his expertise. For details, e-mail or visit