Thank you for listening to The Champion Forum Podcast with Jeff Hancher! Every leader has one thing in common: they have all experienced setbacks. If you want to be a successful leader, you have to choose not to allow failure to define you. Instead, you need to have persistence. Persistence is what will drive you and your team forward, even in the face of fear or doubt. In this episode, we will talk about four traits of persistent people and how you can develop those traits in yourself.
Traits of Persistent People
The most persistent people are often dreamers and visionaries who believe their lives have a purpose beyond earning a living. If you want to be persistent, tie your vision to something bigger than you! When you do, you will be inspired and more motivated to keep working hard when things seem like they are going wrong. Think about your overall vision for your life. Write it down and put it in a place where you will see it as soon as you wake up and right before you go to sleep.
Q: What is the vision that drives you? What cause makes you feel so passionate that you could never give up on it? How have you tied that cause into your vision for your life? For example, think about the charities you support, non-profits you work with, and people you are mentoring. Is there anything you are doing that is not directly tied to your vision? How can you change course so that it becomes a part of your vision?
2. OVERWHELMING DESIRE
“If you really want to do something, you’ll find a way. If you don’t, you’ll find an excuse.” - Jim Rohn
Persistent people never look for an excuse or a way out. They are so overwhelmed by their desire to achieve their goal that they stay motivated during difficult times.
Q: What is your greatest desire? Describe a time when you were so overwhelmed with a goal or project that you could not think about anything else. How did it affect your productivity? How did it affect your ability to problem-solve?
3. SELF CONFIDENCE
Confidence in who you are and the work you are doing will protect you from being greatly affected by what others think of you. If you want to become more confident, develop habits that will help you move toward your ultimate goal such as exercise, meal planning, reading, personal development, etc. Becoming a life-long learner will help you gain knowledge that most don’t have and increase your value as an employee.
Q: Describe a time when you were in a situation where you had knowledge the rest of the group did not have. How were you able to provide a unique solution? How did you feel when you were delivering the information? If you did not feel confident, what other factors were making you feel that way? Are there any habits that you could build into your day to help address those factors?
Adaptable leaders are willing to admit when something is not working and adapt other people’s ideas to get back on track. You cannot let your ego get in the way! Many leaders struggle with this trait because they are unwilling to discard old ideas or admit fault. They are more concerned with being right than they are concerned with doing what is right.
Q: On a scale of 1-10, how easy is it for you to admit when you are wrong? Describe a time when you knew you were wrong but you did not change your approach? Have you ever worked under a leader who refuses to admit that they are wrong? How did it affect your morale and productivity?
While you can work on these traits, it is difficult to teach persistence. Stay focused on your where you are going and allow your past victories to motivate you. Remember that as a leader, you set the tone for your team! If you are persistent, your team will follow. As you see success follow persistence, it will become easier and easier to remain persistent in the face of adversity.
Do you find yourself sticking with your own plan, or do you welcome the input of others? The next time you need to make a decision or a plan, work with your team to come up with three different solutions. Even if you go with your original plan, decide ahead of time that you are going to try at least one of their ideas. By forcing yourself to come up with more than one idea you will increase your creativity and be more prepared to adapt your solution if it is not working.
The most successful people write down their goals and put them in a place where they can see them every day. If you don’t have one already, make a vision board that will help you keep perspective and stay focused on the bigger picture. It does not need to be complicated! You could put a photo of your family, a vacation you want to take, an office you would like to have, etc. in a picture frame and set it on your desk. When you start to feel like giving up, look to the picture and remind yourself why you are on this journey!
Write down 3-5 areas that are currently limiting your confidence. Now, brainstorm at least one habit that would help you proactively grow in those areas. For example, if your weight makes you feel less confident, your habit might be to go for a 20-minute walk after lunch or bring lunch from home instead of eating out. If you feel like you are not qualified for your current position, the habit could be listening to one audiobook every week. Once you have come up with the habits, start implementing them one by one until you create a new routine!