With a New Year ready to roll off the calendar, it provides the quintessential review for all things personal and professional. Any competent motivational speaker or life coach will tell you that you don’t need a new digit added to the year to evolve as a person, you just have to make a conscious decision to pursue success at any given time. Talent you have naturally, skill is only acquired when you constantly beat on your craft. Today’s business leader needs to have an arsenal of skills, a strategic mindset and the driving effort to continually work on bettering themselves. The leaders of tomorrow are firing on all cylinders and have to be agile and creative now more than ever in this competitive landscape.
Everyone is a work in progress—so instead of looking at making radical shifts in how you operate, adopt a few slight changes daily until they manifest to the larger vision you hold yourself to. Here are 5 areas of emphasis to set you up for success in 2016.
- Excellent time management skills
Remember the old adage, you don’t manage time, you manage yourself? A profound concept that often gets overlooked because folks are too focused on manipulating the hands on the clock instead of taking a critical look at themselves and being consciously aware of where their time and energy are being spent. Time is the new money – so use it wisely.
2. Adopt a critical mindset
Don’t just teach your children to read, teach them to question what they read – teach them to question everything. – George Carlin
The legendary comic hit the nail on the head, especially in this digital and information age where our attentions are commandeered daily, it can be difficult to sift through it all and come to your own logical conclusions. Learn to question everything, view all perspectives, where they are coming from and why – it will make you a better all-round decision maker.
Resist the pressure to view things in black and white or “us vs. them” terms. Learn to see the world in shades of gray and from different angles, viewpoints, and perspectives. – Steve Tobak, Entrepreneur contributor
3. Focus + get the work done
Focus and discipline have always been critical to success in just about any field, but these days, managing distraction has become harder for even the most disciplined among us. And that’s not likely to change any time soon. – Steve Tobak, Entrepreneur contributor
Deal with it, delete it or delegate it. The ‘triple D of productivity’ is a Godsend in this digital day. Social media, binge-watching television, the sea of online content, endless meetings – they all take their toll on your productivity. The most successful people in this world hold themselves accountable, have a powerful work ethic and know how to remain motivated and motivate others towards a common goal. Ideas are only a small part of the equation – you need to put one foot in front of the other and get it done. Don’t let procrastination override your system this year – because a goal without an action plan is a daydream.
4. Embrace failure
You can’t always win, but don’t be afraid of making decisions. Too many people view failure as a black mark on their existence, when in reality it’s an unbelievable learning opportunity waiting to be discovered – as long as you are aware of it, it’s cost-effective and you learn from the process, setting yourself up for future success.
Think of failure as the price of getting an education. – Scott Steinberg
5. Invest in yourself
One of the greatest returns on an investment you can make is the investment you make in yourself. Create an image of who you want to be, make the decision, write down how you will get there – and make it happen. Think in terms of tools, training and experience that will serve as a launchpad to propelling you to your next level of success.
Above all else, keep your competitive spirit alive and well. Competition is what fuels our cultural evolution. So embrace it. Competition is how new technologies replace old ones, how startup companies become corporate giants, and how good performers become great ones. The sales environment emulates this competitive model, and can prove to be a difficult task to acquire and retain quality sales talent.
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