5 Daily Habits Successful Leaders Embrace

daily habitsAs a leader, your daily habits are critical to your success.  If you have set goals that you wish to achieve, which I expect you have, then the daily activities become the vehicle to get you there.  Your goal-getting formula can be described as the habitual performance seen in your daily activities.  To determine what habits you should embrace, ask yourself, “What activities do I need to do to achieve my goals?”  Those activities you identify, need to be followed daily until they become habits.

Let’s look at an illustration.  If your goal is to expand your client base by adding 3 new clients per quarter, identify the activities that will help you achieve that goal.  How are you currently connecting with possible leads?  What needs to change?   Would it make sense to decide to make 5 connection calls each day?  Would it make sense to join two conversations with LinkedIn groups each day? 

Completing these activities will become daily habits if you make the conscious decision to complete them each day until they become part of your routine.  Such habits allow you to not only set a goal, but achieve a goal.  Your goal getting formula of daily habits will be unique to your business model and situation, but the foundation of the formula remains the same.  You need to develop daily habits that move you toward reaching your goals.

It is not unusual for us to practice habits that are easy and comfortable.  It’s less comfortable to stretch ourselves.  Yet to become a more effective leader, we need to continuously develop new capabilities.  Here are 5 daily habits that I share from Ray Edwards and Adam Urbanski.  Try including these in your daily routine.  Notice the improvements.  Some of these are more habitual ways of thinking, but all 5 create a powerful capacity to successfully lead your organization.

When setting goals, don’t focus on what could go wrong.  As a leader of an organization, your responsibility is to establish the target vision moving forward.  You set goals that usually paint a broad picture of what you want the organization to become.  Successful leaders don’t allow themselves to focus on what could go wrong, because such focus becomes a barrier for inaction.  They believe they can figure things out as they move through the process.  When setting goals, be strategic and have the goals tied to attaining the organization’s vision, and be mindful of risks, but don’t let such concerns stop you from moving forward.

Take action.  Leaders are action takers.  When an opportunity arises that helps the leader move forward, they take the leap.  As Ray Edwards states in his podcasts, ideas have a half-life of energy.  The longer you delay acting on an idea, the less energy you will have to act.  Be decisive when analyzing ideas and take advantage of opportunities that present themselves and fit with getting your organization where you want it to be.

Never fail, always learn.   Have you made mistakes?  We all have.  You made decisions and choices that were the best you could do at the time.  However, successful leaders consider failures as learning opportunities, and use the information to improve the results next time around.  Dwelling on your failures only dents your self-image and deflates your confidence.  Everything that happens is an opportunity to learn more about yourself and the industry in which you work.  We are the ones who assign the meaning to an event that has occurred. If we assign positive lesson learned, we have the opportunity to use what the message taught us to make more informed decisions in the future.

Put first things first.  Stephen Covey in his book, First Things First, tells us to schedule the most important things in your life first and build your other activities around them.  I like to work with an 18-month calendar in which I schedule the important events in my life that are upcoming.  Personal events including vacations, family celebrations and obligations are included.  I include important events in our business so that when setting goals to be achieved, I have a better understanding of the time-frame I have available to complete them.

Change who you are.  People are always growing and developing.  In growing your business, the skills that you have used to get to this level may not be adequate to get you to the next level.  Yet, it is difficult to change.  Our self-conception is one area that can be a barrier for change.  For example, if you believe that you are not good at delegating, then you will be hesitant to delegate to others, even though an expanding business can’t survive without your delegating.  You’ll need to embrace a changed perspective.  Give yourself some credit for your development.  Development is an ongoing process.  Life experiences provide many opportunities to grow and make a positive impact along the way.

If I were to look at your calendar, what would I find?  Would I find that you have scheduled daily habits that provide you the formula for meeting your goals?  Would I find that you have set priorities for handling first things first?  Would I find that you have established a routine for not only building a great business, but also enjoying life?

Want to improve your daily habits and boost your leadership success?  Join my 4 -part online mastermind class, to learn the Purpose Driven Productivity System.  Check out the schedule for the next available course, and start your new daily habit routine.

Download 5 Daily Habits Successful Leaders Embrace as a pdf.

Dr. Ann Gatty is president of Strategic People Solutions, a business consulting firm, helping businesses add value-assets to their businesses. For the past twenty years she and her husband, Gene, have been providing leadership development programs, business implementation strategies, and solving HR employment issues. Ann has recently created The Business Sphere of Excellence® a strategic business planning model used to construct annual and long range business plans helping businesses run more efficiently and profitably. Dr. Ann Gatty is an expert in understanding and creating a diverse workplace culture. She currently focuses on improving workplace productivity, leadership development and women entrepreneurs.
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