It is generally recommended that everyone must strive to become exceptional and to take charge of underutilized potential:
T: Time should be taken to reflect on your strengths and weaknesses, as well as to do something about the weaknesses.
A: Attitude must be fostered and modified as needed.
K: Knowledge must be updated to keep yourself marketable.
E: Empathy and consideration in caring for others' feelings should be strived for.
C: Communication must be constantly improved and perfected.
H: Health and humor must be diligently nurtured.
A: Appearance must be properly maintained.
R: Respect yourself and others and live one day at a time—enjoy life; why simply wait?
G: Goals should be set for yourself and your family by, for example, creating a five- year plan.
E: Empower the possibilities by finding ways to delegate, assist, entrust, and praise others, and by being generous and giving.
Many "rules of thumb" are derived from experience. They are common sense heuristics that are all reasonable and intuitively correct.
Knowing what is needed to become (a) an effective engineer, (b) a good engineering manager, or (c) an excellent engineering leader is a very good start. The next step is to learn the skills and capabilities to shape one's own attitudes, and to acquire the attributes needed to become an effectual engineer, good engineering manager, or excellent engineering leader. The third step is to lead and contribute in creating competitive advantages in strategic differentiations and operational excellence for the enterprise.
To be successful, one must practice, practice, and practice until the preferred behavior becomes second nature.