There are four characteristics that make a great leader: productivity, motivation, ability to sell and awareness
We’ve already gone over productivity in depth. In this article, we will look at some practical strategies for driving motivation.
First, let’s see what motivation is not. There are plenty of pundits out there who say if you work harder than everyone else, you’ll succeed. I say show me the proof — and not just anecdotal evidence. It takes more than just hard work to be successful. You have to work smarter, not just harder.
One of the key factors to staying motivated is being challenged to the edge of your abilities. Trying something that is too easy will bore you. And trying something that is too hard will discourage you. Instead, take the “Goldilocks approach.” This means finding challenges that are just right.
Otherwise, you may become someone who can share ideas or start projects but never finish them. These types of leaders appear to have motivation based on their innovative thinking. But if their ideas never come to fruition, or the project never gets finished, there is no true sustainable motivation there.
You need to challenge yourself to move forward in your business and leadership skills. This challenge needs to be clearly defined since it’s going to drive your motivation. Take time to really think through your challenge. It should be “just right.” Anything too far off base or too easy will not drive motivation.
As a business owner, you have many challenges. It comes with the territory. If it were easy, everyone would be a business owner. In this case, try to think of a challenge around a passion and an area that, if improved, will propel your business forward.
Here are three elements to consider when challenging yourself:
- Talent: What talent do you have that will help you in this challenge?
- Skills: What skills do you need to obtain to meet this challenge?
- Achievement: What do you need to do in order to win this challenge?
Take the time today to start working on a challenge for your business and leadership goals. This will help you see what you want, where you’re going and why you deserve to get there.
A person with old-fashioned grit stays motivated through perseverance and passion for achieving their long-term goals.
Would you say that you have grit?
This isn’t something you’re born with. If you don’t already have that drive and determination to do whatever it takes, all is not lost. You can still develop grit and harness it.
Let’s look at the four elements of grit:
- Interest: It’s hard to have interest if you’re not passionate about something. You should enjoy what you do, and in turn, you’ll be motivated to continue doing it. If you’ve lost interest in your business or career, spend time redeveloping it. Once you have it, you need to keep fanning the flames so that you don’t lose it again.
- Practice: From childhood on up — riding a bike to driving a car — practice has always been part of your growth plan. Every day, you should try to do things better. That’s grit in action.
- Purpose: If you don’t know both your personal vision and business vision, this is something you need to fix. I’ve discussed both of these in detail in prior articles. A purpose is what drives you. You need to believe in what you do. Without that, it’s easy for both grit and motivation to fizzle out.
- Hope: To me, hope is perseverance. It’s your ability to rise to the occasion and take on anything because you have a hope for something better in the future. Whether that’s your “champagne moment” or retirement (which is also a “champagne moment”), hold on to that hope. Let it drive your passion, grit and motivation.
Having a business that challenges you and gives you the passion for getting up every day and working it to the next level is what it takes to drive personal profitability and happiness. If your business doesn’t challenge you, or if you are not applying grit to it, you’re barely set up for short-term gain.