Succeeding in business, whether in a high, mid or entry-level leadership position, requires continuous effort, long hours, genuine commitment, and doing high impact as well as routine work well and on time.
Decide you want to be a very effective – a great leader – and you can do it.
Set realist performance goals that are obtainable and yet will make you stretch. You want to succeed! Yes, it's work. You must strive every day – but the smarter you work, the more disciplined you are, the easier it becomes.
Don't make this more challenging than it needs to be.
Be a team player, strive to be the MVP, step out of your comfort zone, handle the difficult problems, attract new clients, know what clients need and want and deliver it, help your co-workers succeed, be positive, avoid water cooler talk about bosses and peers, try to help everyone look good, make things better, solve problems, contribute your ideas and encourage bottom up ideas, and always do your best to help your company and co-workers succeed. Is it a lot? Not really. Keep up your positive attitude, trust your abilities, and be a good person and it is actually very enjoyable.
Be careful not to set yourself up for failing to do well by trying to do it all and trying to be great at everything. Make choices about how you commit your energy – work, family, spouse, friends, community, fitness, spiritual life, and health. Be aware of these areas that require your time and energy. They may be like a tide, ebbing and flowing, as priorities frequently change, such as a big opportunity at work, an illness of a family member, or a problem with a child. Be cognizant and ready to adapt to a balance you feel is best.
Don't feel that certain work that must be done is beneath you. Do it with enthusiasm. In fact, it's a way to learn, and your co-workers will respect you. It requires humility, but without humility one cannot grow.
A great leader carries herself/himself with integrity, dignity, a caring about others, and a competitive spirit to be the best at helping clients and co-workers and to be a positive influence.
Yes, one must work hard everyday, and often evenings and weekends. There's no easy way, so one's own strong work ethic is essential, as well as a respect for others who have that same commitment.
There are potential challenges, for sure. There will be problems, internal and external. Be prepared to weather these storms. These are the times to stay cool, hold your emotions in check, think clearly and trust your own abilities as well as your people. Know that being a success as a leader is well worth the effort.
For example, many individuals have great jobs with great companies, yet there is a personal problem with a boss and thus they leave and go to another company. Or sometimes a boss has a problem with a direct report and sets an environment that is not encouraging success for that person, and the individual leaves.
Try to work out the problem, please! Remember, a problem discussed is a problem half solved, and discussion is the fuel of change. Sit with the person with whom the problem exists and talk about it. Don't interrupt, listen, use silence to process what you hear, and try to understand the person's viewpoint. It could well take more than one meeting, and that may be your responsibility as a leader.
This is honestly what I have seen from my experience and I feel very strongly about this type of open discussion. Please feel free to tell me what you see and feel!
Finally, I mentioned staying positive and being a positive influence, and, yes, enjoy yourself! Make a plan for yourself, to have this be the week you practice these principles and strive to become the leader you aspire to be.
My call to action is set high goals for yourself and to do the right things. You can do this! It's a blast!