Everyone wants to be successful. But most people do not believe that success is attainable. So, they offer excuses for why success has eluded them. Excuses such as bad luck, lack of sufficient funds, too old, or too young. What is worse, these same people will gladly give you multiple reasons why you will never become successful, either. When you face this negativity, do not be discouraged. Instead, take a long look at the person. Are they living the life you want to live? Probably not. So, take their negativity and use it as your motivation to prove them wrong. Do not let them rob you of your dreams. Finally, remember that you are a product of the company you keep. If you desire to be successful, surround yourself with amazing people. Find other like-minded people with dreams of their own. And build each other up with encouragement.
The relationships you develop with the members of your team are built on trust. You build trust by being a person of integrity. You show your team you are a person of integrity by acting consistently in all situations. Regardless of the situation you are in, your team sees whether you are bound by your moral principles or if you allow the situation to dictate your reactions. Situational morality does not build trust with the members of your team. Strive to be consistent with your principles and predictable with your actions. This is the only way to become a great leader. With it, your team will learn to trust you. From this, your team will grant you greater and greater permission to lead them. Your team will lean on you when times are difficult. And when times are good, your team will work hard for you.
One common misconception about being a leader is expressed in the phrase, “It’s lonely at the top.” That may be true for those who rely solely on their authority to lead. Those that rely on authority create negative work environments. The culture of their teams develops into an us-vs.-them mentality. These leaders undermine team members who show talent and ability. Because deep down, these leaders are insecure about their ability to lead. So, they do not want others to succeed and advance. It is lonely at the top because these leaders strive to be the king of the hill. True leadership does not rely on authority. Instead, true leaders use their influence to advance the entire team. True leaders build relationships with the members of their team. They focus on advancing the entire team. They work with their team. And the entire team advances. True leaders are never alone.
There are plenty of businesses in the world whose ultimate goal is to win at any cost. Whether the company is interacting with its employees, its customers, or its competition, some have an insatiable need to come out on top. What these business owners fail to realize is they are jeopardizing their long-term success for a short-term win. In the long run, your business must build loyalty with its employees and customers. You build loyalty by being consistently fair with everyone you encounter. No, treating your competition fairly will not make them loyal to you. But your employees and your customers are watching. And their loyalty is vital to your long-term success. So, don’t wait until the end of your life to realize that you should have treated people better. Be a person of integrity. Win at business while you win at life. And have no regrets.
Everyone faces hardships in life. One of your team members may be dealing with a child suffering from cancer. They may be struggling to take care of a parent with dementia. They may be going through a divorce. Whatever it is, it will surely affect their work. When a member of your team is suffering, ask yourself how you would want to be treated if you were in their shoes. Ask the rest of your team how they would want to be treated. Because at the end of the day, you are still a team. And teams stick together. So, the parent with a sick child may need time off. Can others help cover the workload? Will you pay them after they have used up their vacation time? Decide what you can tolerate and be upfront with them. You will not regret going above your obligation as the team leader.
We are all born with individual talents. But we do not all use our talents to the best of our ability. Maybe we are unaware of what our true talents are. Maybe we lack the desire to use and develop our talents. Or maybe we have mentally buried our talents in the ground. When this happens, it is very difficult to raise up our talents again. We need encouragement. We need someone who loves us to help us see our natural abilities and encourage us to share our abilities with others. We need someone to help us shine. This is what we do for those that we love. We see the best in them, even when they are unable to see the best in themselves. We encourage them to discover their talents. We provide opportunities for them to share their talents with others. We want them to shine.
Building relationships is a crucial part of becoming a successful individual. In fact, one big reason that so many do not achieve the success that they desire is their lack of good people skills. Remember, the ability to get along with other people and relate to them is vital to your success. If you are not a good listener, if you lack empathy with others, if you cannot take positive criticism, then you have some work to do. A lot of work. Because you cannot fake it until you make it. You must be genuine if other people are going to want to do business with you.