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Three Important Principles in Reading of a Horoscope:

1. Desha or country: you must keep in mind the background of the country to which a person belongs and interpret a horoscope against that background.

2. Kaal or time: this means that when you are seeing a horoscope in twenty first century, you cannot apply the principles of middle ages given in books. For example, sixty years ago Indian women did not come out of their homes to go to a work at different places. Now they do it and therefore interpret their horoscopes as you will interpret the horoscopes of males.

3. Paatra or personal background: Here you must know the personal background of the person for whom you are predicting. If he is an important political leader, achievement here means his coming into a big cabinet position. If he is a government servant, achievement means a big promotion. If he is a businessman, it is big profit. If he is a scientist, it is a discovery or invention.

The interpretation can be skillful only if the astrologer has the ability to weigh the pros and cons of a situation and the person. 
Parashara insists on this and calls it uha poha patu (the ability to weigh different factors in arriving at an accurate conclusion). 

reprinted with permission