Advertising
Advertising

10 Things Everyone Always Forgets That Are More Important Than Their Job

10 Things Everyone Always Forgets That Are More Important Than Their Job

Let’s face it. We have so many work priorities that we simply forget about life’s real priorities and we easily get lost in the pursuit of making more money. And it is a never-ending circle. As we make more money, our appetites increase, and we think we need more money, and so on and so forth. Once we get lost in this jungle, getting home tired each and every day, years pass by, and before we realize it, we have become old and have nothing else except our career to show for. So, here is a list of things that you should pay more attention to. These things will ultimately bring your more joy and personal satisfaction than your work.

1. Family Bonds

You’re already quite lucky if you have a family that loves you and that supports you. Whenever we think of business people, we assume that they have no time for their children. But that does not have to be so! Make time! It is essential to participate and be a big part in your family’s life. This balance between making money and participating in family activities can be hard, but once you achieve it, you will feel your bonds with your loved ones become stronger

Advertising

2. The Elusive Love

Finding a love partner is already hard as it is. And if you work from 9 to 5 (or usually more), it can be even harder. You can quite easily slip into thinking “I don’t need anyone,” and while it is important to know how to enjoy life when single, it is also important to at least give love a chance and try and find someone that will make your life a bit more fulfilling. Finding that perfect someone can take a lot of work, and it will require a lot of compromise on both sides. But once you find yourself in such a relationship, you will have another support pillar in your life, a person who will always be there to give you a helping hand, or a kind word – whatever you need.

3. The Flow of Time

Time management skills are really important for any working professional, and they are essential if you want to have a balanced lifestyle, where you have enough time for everything. This should be on your priority list, but most people just throw it away and dedicate themselves to only a single aspect of their lives. If you succeed at balancing your work and social life, you will easily create more space for your hobbies or other activities that make you happy. Get up early, but also remember to sleep well. Spend your weekends wisely. Yes, get to work on time, but also get home on time, as both of those things are equally important.

Advertising

4. Philanthropy

I know that the economy is not what it used to be, but guess what – it never is, was or will be! The economy is changing all the time, and no one can deny that money is tight; so many of us ask a simple question: why should I help others? Probably even people like Bill Gates, who gives a lot of his own wealth to charity, ask themselves this question from time to time. But the answer is simple: you are defined by how you treat those less fortunate than yourself. Not only will you feel good by helping others, but you will be changing lives all around you. And similar to Superman, you should not be doing this for selfish reasons. You can help out both financially and practically almost any charitable organization. You could find a local animal shelter and donate some money, or you could buy some food for a local homeless shelter. The possibilities are endless. Just imagine how the world would look if everyone were to help out others once in a while.

5. The Importance of Friendships

Without friends, life would not be as fun. You wouldn’t have anyone to laugh at your jokes or anyone to ask for advice. Not to mention that you wouldn’t have someone to share your secrets with. But friends, nowadays, are taken for granted and are seen as a means to an end. This is why you must maintain your friendships, and this can be done easily: invite a few of them over for a coffee, where you can talk about life and share your experiences. Everyone knows that we are all busy, but making time for your friends is actually the most clear indication to them how much you deeply care about their friendship, something that will prove to be the brightest of candles in the darkest of times.

Advertising

6. The Need to Improve Yourself

Every day you are alive you learn something new, something interesting and something practical. You should never neglect your personal growth. Make time to fine tune your skills and knowledge. In this age of practicality, you can learn so many new things online. There are courses for everything, so something like learning a new language has never been easier. This is really important for two simple reasons. Firstly, you will become a better person by learning new things, which will broaden your horizons and open you up to new experiences. Secondly, sooner or later you will probably be in a situation where a particular skill will be really useful or even necessary, especially in a work environment.

7. Proper Exercise

The same way you need occasional mental exercise for your mind, you need physical exercise for your body. This can be achieved easily, as no one is asking you to become a body builder but just to visit a gym a few times a week. With the help of a professional, this can quickly become an easy and fun task. If you do not like overcrowded gyms, you can go for a jog, and even invite a friend or two. This can turn into a nice social event and will also be healthy for your body. Exercise has been shown to ward off depression, so whenever you are feeling down, or the stress at work is simply killing you, then maybe you need to grab those sneakers and run a few circles.

Advertising

8. A Healthy Diet

We all know how tempting fast food can be and how hard it can be to avoid things like bacon because… well… bacon. But having a balanced diet will not only improve your health but it can also improve your work performance. The next time you have free time, prepare a healthy meal for yourself. Bring it to work the next day for lunch. This way you can avoid cheeseburgers. The same thing goes for snacks, as the over-consumption of sugars is the main cause of obesity in developed countries. So make your own delicious home-made substitutions that are not loaded with sugar. Eat fruits and greens in larger quantities. And remember, fries do not count as vegetables.

9. Adventure

What is the purpose of life if it is not in some way fun and exciting? Remember to travel, read, explore and interact with new people and situations. Do not be afraid of new experiences. People are generally afraid of becoming stuck in a rut, but many people, ironically, find safety there and fear leaving their comfort zone. Be stronger and smarter than that. Dare to try new things! Go on a vacation – alone, if no one wants to go with you. A few days abroad can open your eyes more than a year of doing your same old job. This will give you the courage necessary to take more risks. And who knows, some of them might change your life for the better in a way you previously thought was impossible.

10. Personal Satisfaction

All of these things we have mentioned above have one thing in common: they make you realize that there are more important things in life than work, and that we are quick to forget about them. But they are actually more important to your personal feelings of satisfaction. You work hard. You try your best and this is why you need to ensure that you feel happy and satisfied, and it is your duty, and a duty to others, to be content. Spend time with the right people, have understanding, love and patience for your family, and nurture your health and your body. Try and focus on the more important things in life, even if they do seem small and insignificant. There is much more to life and happiness than your job. You should never neglect your life for the sake of a paycheck.

Featured photo credit: Hastening businessman against office. The modern business man. via shutterstock.com

More by this author

Ivan Dimitrijevic

Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

50 New Year’s Resolution Ideas And How To Achieve Each Of Them 5 Exercises To Improve Intimacy and Create a Better Relationship 8 Fun and Unique Birthday Party Ideas for People in Their 20s 50 Cleaning Hacks for Your Home That Will Make Your Life Easier 40 Amazing Date Ideas for Valentine’s Day

Trending in Work

1 How to Lead a Team More Effectively and Be a True Leader at Work 2 10 Business Networking Tips: Grow Your Professional Network 3 4 Effective Ways to Motivate Employees During the Busy Holiday Season 4 8 Things to Remember When You Don’t Know What to Do with Your Life 5 11 Ways to Revive Company Culture

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on December 5, 2018

How to Lead a Team More Effectively and Be a True Leader at Work

How to Lead a Team More Effectively and Be a True Leader at Work

Being an efficient manager and a charismatic boss at the same time can seem like an impossible task. Is there a way to deliver the desired results for your business while remaining liked and respected by your staff?

We all know bad examples of team leaders who seem to fail at one aspect or the other, or even at both. But we’ve also heard of awesome managers who seem to juggle both things well enough.

How do they do it?

By sticking to few proven ways that let them maintain a positive karma score while remaining efficient. In this article, we’ll guide you through 11 smart management tips on how to lead a team and become something more than a boss – a leader.

1. Find a Management Strategy and Stick to It

There’s nothing worse than a boss that keeps changing his or her opinions and assignments depending on their mood or a book they read this week. Chaotic decisions increase the insecurity and frustration of your team, so you better find your strategy and stick to it.

If you do find some new methods you want your staff to follow, make sure they don’t contradict the general direction you are taking. Otherwise, you risk making your team take one step forward and two steps back.

2. Set Goals​ and Track Progress in Reaching Them

Set individual and collective goals​ for your team and track the progress in reaching them. This might sound obvious at first, but too often we find ourselves stuck between daily customer requests and monthly reports, and the bigger goal or vision seems to fade away.

According to Elon Musk (and many other successful CEOs around the Globe), it’s crucial to have a clear and motivating aim to where the company is heading. His aim for the space transportation company SpaceX is “to make humankind a multi-planetary species”.[1] That’s a huge goal but the company is slowly moving closer to it by reaching smaller steps and milestones, like launching self-landing rockets. This is also a very inspiring and meaningful goal that helps employees endure the company’s extremely high expectations and 60 to 70-hour work weeks.[2]

Even if your goals are not as grand, setting and reaching milestones will give you a clear insight into the team’s overall efficiency and daily progress. With time, you will be able to see the weak spots and improve your results.​

Advertising

3. Demand Learning from Your Team

CEO of print on demand startup Printful, Davis Siksnans, believes that:[3]

“The key for a company going through rapid growth is to empower your employees’ self-development.”

His company with 500 employees spanning two continents demands a culture of learning and provides all the tools necessary to do it.

Their idea is –  as the company scales, people have to grow in their positions too, which means that they have to be constantly learning. Siksnans says:

“We try to hire people for what they might become, but they need to have that drive.“

Alternatively, you can provide educational courses for your employees or invite informal lecturers to educate and inspire your team. You can also encourage peer-to-peer learning by asking employees to teach their particular experience or skill to co-workers.

4. Invest in a Pleasant Work Environment

Studies show that a well-designed office environment can increase your team’s overall performance by as much as 20%. You’ll be surprised to see that even very small interior tweaks that don’t require major investments can improve your workers’ performance.

Some ideas for a more productive and pleasing work environment:

  • Invest in modern furniture – offer ergonomic chairs, standing desks, and individually arranged workplaces​.
  • Start an in-house library – reading for pleasure just 30 minutes a day is proven to be enough to become more effective at work,[4] improve focus, and deal with problems like depression and anxiety.​
  • Play jazzy office music – rhythmic background music will help workers feel more energetic and enthusiastic while doing everyday tasks.​
  • Set up entertainment or break rooms – being able to relax and have fun at work creates a strong commitment, helps employees relax and clear their minds, and boosts productivity.​
  • Bring in uplifting office decor – it’s been found that art in the workplace can boost productivity,[5] lower stress, and even encourage employees to innovate.​
  • Decorate the office with live plants for freshness and a welcoming feel. Furthermore, plants are found to ensure better air quality and increase workers’ productivity by 15%.[6]

5. Be Kind and Sincere to Your Team

Did you know that 50% of employees quit because they dislike working with their manager?[7] In fact, most times when people leave their jobs they actually leave their managers. Being friendly and sincere may not be enough to be a successful manager, but it’s a big part of it.

Advertising

Some ways to show you appreciate and care for your staff:

  • Celebrate the progress and achievements of your employees. And don’t be shy to simply say thanks.​
  • Talk to your employees regularly and really listen to what they have to say. Address their concerns, help them reach their goals and do your best to improve their work and daily life.
  • If you’re having a bad day, don’t pour out your stress and anger on the staff. Instead, try to recharge yourself by appreciating the achievements of your team and setting the next goals.
  • Try not to overload your team with work. Every company has rush periods when it’s okay to have more work than usual. But remember that people cannot work under prolonged pressure and stress.
  • Don’t be selfish – it can be very demotivating to see that the manager only focuses on what you can do for him and doesn’t care about your goals and well-being.​ As the CEO of Xerox Anne M. Mulcahy put it,[8]

    “Employees who believe that management is concerned about them as a whole person — not just an employee — are more productive, more satisfied, more fulfilled.”

Whenever you are having doubts about your kind attitude, remember – satisfied employees are productive employees which lead to satisfied customers and eventually – success for your company.

6. Offer Flexible Work Hours

The traditional Monday to Friday, 9 to 5 job is beginning to slip away. Increasingly more people are working remotely or having flexible work hours, and we can expect this trend to continue. To adapt to these changing habits and remain competitive in the labor market, more employers are offering the chance to choose your own work hours, work from home or even from another city or country.

Offering flexible hours is a powerful way to inspire your existing staff and give them intrinsic motivation. Why not let your employees choose their preferred working hours while keeping the 8-hour day? For example, night owls are unhappy and unproductive if they have to come to work before 10 AM, while others might prefer to start at 7 and finish earlier.

You can go even farther and hire remote workers – this way you’ll be able to recruit from a global talent pool and even save money on office expenses like desks, stationery, electricity, etc.[9]

7. Track Your Team’s Productive Time

Not monitoring your employees’ progress and efficiency can result in poor performance and slacking. Instead of letting things go with the flow, you should consider installing time-tracking software on your employees’ computers and see who’s doing great and who might need a productivity boost.

But don’t get it wrong – there’s no need to become big brother and watch every step your employees take. If you use the time-tracker as a spying tool, you will only see increasing suspicion and insecurity around you, and your employees’ happiness levels will drop.

On the contrary, choose software that allows employees to mark private time that won’t be tracked. In addition, consider these time-management tactics:

Advertising

  • Allow flexible work hours. (see Tip No 6)
  • Encourage breaks – studies show that employees who take regular breaks are more productive than those who don’t.[10]
  • Enable remote work to show your employees that you trust them and that they can work from home or even from another country (if they can maintain sufficient productivity).
  • Consider offering bonuses to your most productive employees (those who show productivity levels above 90 or 95%).

8. Use Only Constructive Criticism

Constructive criticism means offering valid and rational opinions about the work of others, involving both positive comments and remarks about what should be improved. Constructive criticism is usually expressed in a friendly manner rather than an oppositional one.

When you evaluate your team’s work, give them feedback that’s helpful, specific, and sincere. Don’t be shy to praise, but also be direct and even strict when necessary.

9. Don’t Give Special Treatment to Yourself

The boss’s actions are – directly or indirectly – observed by your team. This means that your employees look up to you and often mimic your attitude towards your work and the company – especially if your actions don’t show commitment. Nobody wants to work for a leader who doesn’t go all in or inspire motivation.

What you should do is lead by example. If you expect your employees to arrive at work on time and work 8 hours, do the same yourself. If you want them to show initiative, show it yourself and encourage others to do the same.

Jeff Weiner is the CEO of LinkedIn – a company of 3,000 employees that consistently ranks as one of the best workplaces with a 92 percent employee-approval rating.[11] Weiner’s workdays are reported to be equally long or even longer than those of his employees, allowing him to stay “extremely credible as a leader.”

10. Empower Your Employees

Here’s a common mistake many managers make:

They don’t motivate their staff and assume they simply love to work for their company.​ Such belief can result in painful losses for the company – especially these days when many companies are in desperate need of a reliable workforce.

Instead of directly thinking about bonuses and perks, consider intrinsic motivation. For example, enable flat organization in your team and listen to your employees’ ideas when they come up with opinions and suggestions. Your company might actually benefit a great deal from the feedback, and the unique ideas employees come up with.

You can also start an initiative where employees can freely share or pitch their business ideas to you or the founders of the company. If the idea is accepted by the management, the project can be developed, and the employee can have equity options.

Advertising

If people feel they have an impact in the company, they become more motivated, engaged and interested in the company’s growth.

11. Nurture Your Company Culture

Company culture is the personality of a company that defines the overall work environment and relationships between teammates. It also includes company mission, values, ethics, and goals.

Some examples of company cultures are the Horizontal corporate culture (collaborative and equal; popular among startups and free-spirited businesses) and Conventional corporate culture (a more risk-averse and hierarchy-based approach common in traditional companies).

However, you don’t have to stick to pre-existing boxes when creating your corporate culture. You might think of your team as a family, a sports team, or even a hippie camp if it fits your business and purpose. But keep in mind that by the time a company’s size reaches 20 employees, the company culture is set,[12] and any changes will need to be implemented in smaller teams.

Whichever personality you choose for your company, make sure to live by it and nurture it. Some things that might help:

Team building events, relevant books in your office library and proper on-boarding for the new employees to get everyone on the same page from the very beginning.

Be a Leader, Not a Boss

Using the words of Printful’s CEO Davis Siksnans, the ultimate goal is to “Hire great people who don’t have to be managed.”

However, when you do need to demonstrate some initiative and control, act as a leader rather than as a boss.

In other words, don’t be afraid to show the personality behind your role. And keep these 11 tips close to your heart.

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next