We’ve done numerous blog posts on how to build a better business, but in this blog post we want to focus on personal development. Ask any top entrepreneur and they’ll tell you that personal development is an important aspect of business development. Focusing on personal development will help you become a better salesperson, a better business owners, a better employer, etc.
If the concept of personal development is new to you, it can be difficult to know where to start. What books should you read? What presentations you should watch? Because your time is valuable we want to give you a few suggestions to get you started, and a few ideas to get you thinking.
50 Cups of Coffee
Create yourself a list, of 50 living people, you’d want to sit down and talk with over a cup of coffee. They can be anyone from local politicians, business people, to celebrities, and world leaders. Building this list will give you an opportunity to think about why you want to sit down with them, what do you want to learn from them? Perhaps they’ve built several successful businesses, perhaps they have amazing stories to tell.
Don’t worry about creating this list all at once. It will continue to grow and change over time. You will hopefully get to meet some of these people and cross them off your list, while other people will emerge that.
Leaders can find the talent in their team. As you look for people to work for you, this will help you decide. This helps when you are looking for any kind of work to be done for you or your business.
A really interesting talk on time management comes from Laura Vanderkam. To summarize her talk, time management is not about shaving 5, 10, 15 minutes here and there to give yourself an extra hour every day. It’s about prioritization. We can say we don’t dust our blinds because we don’t have time, but if someone said they’d pay you $1,000 if you dusted your blinds, you’d find the time. The reality is that dusting blinds is not a priority. It’s not about not having time, it’s about those things not being a priority.
Build your team with diversity in mind. It’ll give you a wide array of perspectives and ideas. Don’t make all of your employees come from similar backgrounds as you. Your overall innovation will be weakened. It may also lead to a company that fails based on your weaknesses.
You are in control of your time. What are your priorities? This applies to both your professional career and your personal life. If you’ve decided you want to get fit or lose weight, then exercising and eating right need to be a priority. When you have your priorities, put them into your schedule first. Color code them in three categories: personal, careers, and relationship. This will serve two purposes, to help you remember that you need to have priorities in each category, and to help you see how your priorities are balanced.
Try to listen more than you indulge in talking. Being a good leader requires you to listen to what other people have to say. Make sure you are listening to your employees. Listen to the positive and negative things they have to say. Learn from each of your employees by hearing their feedback about buyers and products. You might be amazed at how much you learn by listening.
Own your words. Leadership begins with accountability for what you say and do. You are an important piece of the business, and anything you do or say will reflect on it. Should you find yourself having spoken out of turn or acting negatively, you must set things right. You are the team leader, so everything is ultimately your responsibility.
Leaders who succeed always make time to really listen to what their employees have to say and will seek out feedback. Staff may have an idea which really fits the bill. Avoid fearing criticism, and ask for the opinions of your employees. Acknowledging what others think instill trust in others.
You must lead by example in front of those you work with. Your title isn’t enough to garner respect. If you want your team to be punctual and polite, you have to do this yourself first. People hate hypocrites. To be an effective leader, your employees must respect you.
Turn reviews into a celebration of the employee’s strengths. If you wish to get people motivated you have to figure out what you can do to compliment what they do well, while telling them what they can do to improve.
A great leader avoids being critical of their employees, if possible, and offers praise when it is deserved. For each negative offer five positives. The 5:1 method can help boost communication and employee morale. This can help make a positive impact in your position.
Building a Successful Family Business
When you are a leader, know you have to earn trust. Individuals who work with you are not automatically going to trust you in every situation, but they will learn that you are trustworthy if you show good judgement and remain honest about what your intentions are. Even if things are difficult, you must strive to build trust through interpersonal opportunities that present themselves.
Should the current task demand extra work and hours, stand as the first volunteer. This sets a good example and shows others the importance of the task. This also makes you a team player, instead of just a spectator.
Powered by Inline Related Posts
Integrity is a top quality for great leaders. You should never deviate from your core values. Honesty, remaining ethical and following the company’s rules are all a part of integrity. Many of the world’s great leaders are paragons of integrity. Those who work for you are likely to emulate your behaviors, so it is crucial that you make integrity a priority.
Don’t let being a leader make you think that you can treat people poorly. This will cause them to despise you, and a good leader needs to avoid this.
There are 168 hours in a week, and if you take away the time you sleep and a 40 hour work week, you still have 72 hours left to do everything else. Which is really a lot of time. What are you doing in those 72 hours? Tying it back to the previous point on prioritization, if you say you don’t have time to exercise, how many of those 72 hours are spent watching TV or playing games on your phone. How much of your time is spent commuting? Could that be used to read or listen to a book? What are you doing that is not a priority?
Keep success within your reach by visualizing it. When you start something new, mentally see yourself achieving results. Imagine how it will feel to reward those with you and the praise you will receive from above. This will help you face the task with a positive outlook and enthusiasm.
Wake up early
Could you wake up a half hour or hour early, without compromising your health? You’d get 3-7 extra hours a week to do things. Especially if you’re more productive in the morning, you can take that hour to exercise, read a chapter in a book, write, or even spend time with your kids or partner. That half an hour may simply allow us time to get ready for work at a gentler pace, allowing us to not feel like we have to rush.
Open to change
A woman was cooking a ham, and she always cut both ends off the ham before putting it in the oven. When her husband asked her why she did that, she didn’t really have an answer, “It’s just the way we’ve always cooked ham, my mom used to do it.” When she asked her mom why she cut off the ends of the ham, she didn’t really know either, “It’s the way my mom cooked ham.” When they asked the grandmother why she always cut the ends of the ham off, she said, “Because the pan was too small for the ham, so I had to cut the ends off to make it fit.”
Oftentimes we do things without thinking about or knowing why we do them. In business and in your personal life saying “I’ve always done it this way,” is dangerous. It prevents growth and change that is required for you to move forward personally. Take a look at the things you do and critically ask yourself “Why do I do it this way?” and “Is there a better way?”
What’s right for you
Personal development is going to be different for everyone. Here are a few other suggestions for you to try:
- Tony Robbins – 28 day CD course
- TED Talks – There are hundreds of talks by experts in their fields
- The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
- How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
- Meditation – This may be different for each person. There is no one way to meditate. It may be guided or simply sitting in silence for 10 minutes.
- Books by Norman Vincent Peale
- Books by Napoleon Hill
- Books by Steven Covey
- Interviews with / speeches by the Dali Lama
- What Happy People Know by Cameron Stauth and Dan Baker
Surround yourself with positivity. If there’s someone in your life who is consistently negative, you may find that their attitude is influencing your attitude. We suggest limiting the amount of time you spend with them, and attempting to stay positive when you are with them (perhaps your positivity will rub off).
Take at least 3 of the things from this blog post and implement them into your schedule next week. And allow yourself the opportunity to try them out. That means, don’t just do it once, think it doesn’t work and then abandon it. It takes time to change and develop new habits.
Make personal development a priority.