Are you a leader who proactively sets priorities, goals and stays conscious of the impact you have as a role model? Have you designed upfront alignment by creating a business plan, employee handbook, operations manual and a customer focused culture? Have you built a team where you attract ideal employees, keep them engaged and provide them with a clear understanding of the business economics?

Are you panicked because you just answered “no” to all three questions? Under ideal conditions it is natural to occasionally become discouraged and get off course, says business consultant Laura Harris. Current economic realities are problematic for some and threaten the viability or actual survival of a business for others. The decision we ultimately face is whether we will become more determined than ever to succeed or allow ourselves to become disengaged. Will we challenge ourselves or abdicate responsibility and pray that things turn around soon?

This is a perfect time to re-evaluate the direction of your business, Harris says. If we are to have a passion that’s unyielding and inspires others, we must have the ability to persevere in the midst of chaos. How do we remain steadfast in our determination to put everything we have into the hours we dedicate to our business?

  1. Revisit who we need to be as leaders. Do we have balanced priorities, specific goals for our lives and model behavior that we would want employees to emulate?
  2. Dust off the paperwork. Is it time to tweak the business plan, employee handbook or operations manual and re-evaluate the effectiveness of our focus on customers?
  3. Fine tune the team. Are we adequately staffed with employees who are excited, held accountable and understand what it takes to make the business economically viable?
It’s time to roll our sleeves up and regain the enthusiasm we had as rookies. We know where we could improve our business by taking an honest look in the mirror. The question is, will we recommit to doggedly moving forward when self-discipline doesn’t come easy.

Once determined to advance and decide where we will make improvements, there are things we can do to ensure we remain stubbornly tenacious:
  • Create and measure specific goals.
  • Communicate the changes to your team, family and friends. Ask those around you to hold you accountable to maintaining a focus on the new behaviors you have decided to pursue.
Don’t renew your commitment because you need to pay the bills or because it will please others. Those motives won’t invoke sustainable determination. Remind yourself that you need to get the highest return on investment for the hours you spend working. As William Feather said, “Success seems to be largely a matter of hanging on after others have let go.”

Become adamant about moving forward with a positive mindset and take pride in your contribution to the team. Keep the fires burning for yourself and you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how it energizes those around you.
For more info, go to www.LauraHarris.com.
-- Laura Harris