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7 Habits That Successful Leaders Never Give Up

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7 Habits That Successful Leaders Never Give Up

We all have different angles to what leadership mean. Some will tell you that leaders are born and not made; others will tell you that leaders are made and not born. Yet it does take some sustained habits for you to become the leader you can be.

1. They take the bull by the horn

“Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.” — Les Brown

Great leaders tend to show courage when every other person cowers. They want to make an impact and where else can you make an impact by going at challenges head on. Rather than dilly-dally or make excuses, they take charge and stare at the task at hand with optimism and bravery. Yes even in the face of adversity and struggles, they have greater reason to swing forward rather than turn around.

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2. They are good communicators

“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” – William Arthur Ward

Nelson Mandela, Barack Obama, Hilary Clinton… What do these people have in common? They are effective communicators. They can reach the heart of their listeners with the right words. So even when the heart and desire of their followers is dampened they can speak fire into them. They know how to communicate their thoughts, desires and expectations to others. Every leader doesn’t stop building his/her skill as a communicator.

3. They are unconventional

“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” —Henry Ford

They do things differently, perhaps uniquely. They won’t follow the crowd or seek validation from the external rather than the internal. They chart their on course not based on popular opinion but on what may be considered unorthodox. This may take a lot of risk and criticism, but leaders do have a thick skin. Such unconventional tricks or play is what defines them in the long term rather than just for the short term.

4. They are adaptable

“Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm.” – Publilius Syrus

They are flexible. They are not dogmatic or rigid. If they have to bend or secure another route that will provide the right answers, they will take it. They know that the world is unpredictable and constantly changing. Rather than try to fight their environment, they are willing to adapt when they have to.

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5. They are passionate

“You have to be burning with an idea, or a problem, or a wrong that you want to right. If you’re not passionate enough from the start, you’ll never stick it out.” – Steve Jobs

They don’t commit themselves into ventures or projects because it is profitable. They go for projects they are passionate about. There is something about passion, it fires energy and can be contagious enough to attract other persons to your cause. Great leaders never give up the habit to be passionate and sharing that passion with everyone around them.

6. They are approachable

“Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

They never distance themselves from the pack. They are open to suggestions ideas that will propel success. They understand that in an environment where people are stifled and cannot connect with others there is always a greater chance of failure than success. This is why they will always welcome criticism, challenges and the opinion of others.

7. They are humble

“I have three precious things which I hold fast and prize. The first is gentleness; the second is frugality; the third is humility, which keeps me from putting myself before others. Be gentle and you can be bold; be frugal and you can be liberal; avoid putting yourself before others and you can become a leader among men.” Lao Tzu

Nothing is gained with arrogance. Great leaders never give up the habit of humility. They are not consumed in their world. Even when they are in a position of authority they do not make others feel that they are better them. They will jump in and do the dirty work when they have to and they will never have to ask their followers or subordinates to do what they are not willing to do themselves.

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Featured photo credit: https://unsplash.com/ via unsplash.com

More by this author

Casey Imafidon

Specialized in motivation and personal growth, providing advice to make readers fulfilled and spurred on to achieve all that they desire in life.

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Published on September 21, 2021

How Remote Work Affects Your Productivity And Wellbeing (Backed By Data)

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How Remote Work Affects Your Productivity And Wellbeing (Backed By Data)

The internet is flooded with articles about remote work and its benefits or drawbacks. But in reality, the remote work experience is so subjective that it’s impossible to draw general conclusions and issue one-size-fits-all advice about it. However, one thing that’s universal and rock-solid is data. Data-backed findings and research about remote work productivity give us a clear picture of how our workdays have changed and how work from home affects us—because data doesn’t lie.

In this article, we’ll look at three decisive findings from a recent data study and two survey reports concerning remote work productivity and worker well-being.

1. We Take Less Frequent Breaks

Your home can be a peaceful or a distracting place depending on your living and family conditions. While some of us might find it hard to focus amidst the sounds of our everyday life, other people will tell you that the peace and quiet while working from home (WFH) is a major productivity booster. Then there are those who find it hard to take proper breaks at home and switch off at the end of the workday.

But what does data say about remote work productivity? Do we work more or less in a remote setting?

Let’s take a step back to pre-pandemic times (2014, to be exact) when a time tracking application called DeskTime discovered that 10% of most productive people work for 52 minutes and then take a break for 17 minutes.

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Recently, the same time tracking app repeated that study to reveal working and breaking patterns during the pandemic. They found that remote work has caused an increase in time worked, with the most productive people now working for 112 minutes and breaking for 26 minutes.[1]

Now, this may seem rather innocent at first—so what if we work for extended periods of time as long as we also take longer breaks? But let’s take a closer look at this proportion.

While breaks have become only nine minutes longer, work sprints have more than doubled. That’s nearly two hours of work, meaning that the most hard-working people only take three to four breaks per 8-hour workday. This discovery makes us question if working from home (WFH) really is as good a thing for our well-being as we thought it was. In addition, in the WFH format, breaks are no longer a treat but rather a time to squeeze in a chore or help children with schoolwork.

Online meetings are among the main reasons for less frequent breaks. Pre-pandemic meetings meant going to another room, stretching your legs, and giving your eyes a rest from the computer. In a remote setting, all meetings happen on screen, sometimes back-to-back, which could be one of the main factors explaining the longer work hours recorded.

2. We Face a Higher Risk of Burnout

At first, many were optimistic about remote work’s benefits in terms of work-life balance as we save time on commuting and have more time to spend with family—at least in theory. But for many people, this was quickly counterbalanced by a struggle to separate their work and personal lives. Buffer’s 2021 survey for the State of Remote Work report found that the biggest struggle of remote workers is not being able to unplug, with collaboration difficulties and loneliness sharing second place.[2]

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Buffer’s respondents were also asked if they are working more or less since their shift to remote work, and 45 percent admitted to working more. Forty-two percent said they are working the same amount, while 13 percent responded that they are working less.

Longer work hours and fewer quality breaks can dramatically affect our health, as long-term sitting and computer use can cause eye strain, mental fatigue, and other issues. These, in turn, can lead to more severe consequences, such as burnout and heart disease.

Let’s have a closer look at the connection between burnout and remote work.

McKinsey’s report about the Future of work states that 49% of people say they’re feeling some symptoms of burnout.[3] And that may be an understatement since employees experiencing burnout are less likely to respond to survey requests and may have even left the workforce.

From the viewpoint of the employer, remote workers may seem like they are more productive and working longer hours. However, managers must be aware of the risks associated with increased employee anxiety. Otherwise, the productivity gains won’t be long-lasting. It’s no secret that prolonged anxiety can reduce job satisfaction, decrease work performance, and negatively affect interpersonal relationships with colleagues.[4]

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3. Despite everything, We Love Remote Work

An overwhelming majority—97 percent—of Buffer report’s survey respondents say they would like to continue working remotely to some extent. The two main benefits mentioned by the respondents are the ability to have a flexible schedule and the flexibility to work from anywhere.

McKinsey’s report found that more than half of employees would like their workplace to adopt a more flexible hybrid virtual-working model, with some days of work on-premises and some days working remotely. To be more exact, more than half of employees report that they would like at least three work-from-home days a week once the pandemic is over.

Companies will increasingly be forced to find ways to satisfy these workforce demands while implementing policies to minimize the risks associated with overworking and burnout. Smart companies will embrace this new trend and realize that adopting hybrid models can also be a win for them—for example, for accessing talent in different locations and at a lower cost.

Remote Work: Blessing or Plight?

Understandably, workers worldwide are tempted to keep the good work-life aspects that have come out of the pandemic—professional flexibility, fewer commutes, and extra time with family. But with the once strict boundaries between work and life fading, we must remain cautious. We try to squeeze in house chores during breaks. We do online meetings from the kitchen or the same couch we watch TV shows from, and many of us report difficulties switching off after work.

So, how do we keep our private and professional lives from hopelessly blending together?

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The answer is that we try to replicate the physical and virtual boundaries that come naturally in an office setting. This doesn’t only mean having a dedicated workspace but also tracking your work time and stopping when your working hours are finished. In addition, it means working breaks into your schedule because watercooler chats don’t just naturally happen at home.

If necessary, we need to introduce new rituals that resemble a normal office day—for example, going for a walk around the block in the morning to simulate “arriving at work.” Remote work is here to stay. If we want to enjoy the advantages it offers, then we need to learn how to cope with the personal challenges that come with it.

Learn how to stay productive while working remotely with these tips: How to Work From Home: 10 Tips to Stay Productive

Featured photo credit: Jenny Ueberberg via unsplash.com

Reference

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