How to succeed at your job.

Learning how to succeed at your job is a matter of attitude and a willingness to go all in at work.

“If at all, then properly.” In chapter two of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s new book (Be Useful:
Seven Tools for Life), he introduces the reader to the German phrase “Wenn Schon, Denn
Schon.” Translation: “If at all, then properly.” This means that if you are going to do anything,
do it as best as you can.

According to Arnold, Wenn Schon, Denn Schon was a professional life hack. He credits
his Wenn Schon, Denn Schon attitude as a significant contributor to his professional success.
Bodybuilding, acting, governing, writing, speaking, it didn’t matter what it was, he gave it his
best. No cutting corners. No easy days. No expected handouts. Just good old-fashioned hard

We have a few similar sayings here in the States. Go all in. Bet the farm. Full steam ahead.
Just do it. If you’re going to be a bear, be a grizzly. Okay, that last one might not be an actual
phrase, but you get the point.

Going all in at work isn’t German or American; it’s biblical. In his letter to the church in
Colossae, Paul had this to say, “23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working
for the Lord, not for human masters...” Paul’s words are clear: work with all your heart when you

This is an excellent reminder as we seek to be better men at work. Let me share a few ideas
as we attempt to heed Paul’s encouragement.

1. It is a decision, not a feeling. You and you alone control your attitude. If you go all in at
work, you must decide to do so. No one will force you to do this.

2. This will get you noticed. In the era of “quiet quitting,” your attitude will cause you to
stand out almost immediately. This is good. 

3. Most likely, your peers will not celebrate this decision. Like #2 above, if you change
your attitude, your peers might feel “threatened.” However, those you lead and your boss
will thank you.

4. All in doesn’t mean sacrificing your personal life/family. This is one of the biggest
misconceptions about going all in at work. All in does not mean workaholic. Work is a
marathon, not a sprint. The key to sustainability is pace. I like Dan Go’s saying about
getting in shape, “It’s 40% diet, 10% exercise, and 50% managing your emotions.”
Winning at work is 40% work, 10% developing healthy relationships at work, and 50%
managing your emotions.

5. This might lead you to quit your current job. If you cannot stomach going all in at
work, that might be a clue you are in the wrong job. There is no perfect job, but the
inability to go all in is a sign you might be in the wrong one.

6. It is the right thing to do. This is what men do. We reject passivity and accept

“I just wish people cared more.” I hear this sentiment all the time. My leadership development
consulting practice has me working with leaders almost every day, and this is one of the most
common complaints I hear. So many senior leaders feel lonely because they feel like no one
cares as much as they do. They feel like they’re the only ones who are all in.

Going all in is your new competitive advantage. Why? Because the bar has never been lower!
Quiet quitting, pessimism, and negativity rule the day. To start winning at work, change your
attitude and bring your best. The future belongs to the emotionally committed.

This year, choose to go all in at work. I can’t promise this will give you biceps like Arnold’s or
make millions as a movie star, but I can promise you this: you’ll feel like a million
bucks. Controlling what you can control, not cutting corners, pursuing excellence, working hard -
this is what men do. This year, Wenn Schon, Denn Schon! Be a grizzly bear at work!


Adam lives in Dallas, TX with his wife and two sons. Professionally, Adam is a leadership development consultant. He has also been the host of The BetterMan Podcast since 2020. You can connect with Adam at