Leaders are always improving.  They are always getting better.  Leaders understand what made them successful today will not make them successful tomorrow.  Our world is changing at too rapid a pace to stand still.  Leaders make dust or eat it.

The following are 5 Areas Leaders Must Continually Improve In:

  1. Leaders Must Continually Improve In Areas They Can Control – There are many things leaders cannot control.  For a full list, click here.  But there are three things every leader can control.  Leaders can control how much energy they bring.  Leaders can determine how much effort they give.    And finally, leaders can determine their attitude.
  2. Leaders Must Continually Improve Their Focus – Focus is a key ingredient to a leader’s success.  It is easy to get distracted.  Leaders can drift.  In order to avoid sideways energy and distractions, focus on results.  Be bottom-line oriented.  Box office expert David Mumpower said of director Michael Bay and the Transformers movie series in a USA Today article, “He releases movies that critics despise but consumers passionately support by voting with their wallets.”  Bay does not make movies for critics.  Critics do not buy tickets.  He makes films for his loyal audience who do purchase tickets.
  3. Leaders Must Continually Improve In Their Ability To Help Others Reach Their Potential – ESPN analyst Trent Dilfer recently said, “Good coaching is getting the most from the least and the best from the best.”  What is one thing you can today can help someone you serve get better?
  4. Leaders Must Continually Improve By Cultivating Quality Relationships – Smart leaders do not burn bridges.  On the contrary, they actually cultivate them.  In 2013, Cleveland Browns quarterback Brian Hoyer tore his ACL playing the Buffalo Bills ending his season.  The Bills’ defensive coordinator at the time was Mike Pettine.  Coach Pettine sent him a note expressing his disappointment in Hoyer’s injury and told him to stay encouraged.  Several months later, Pettine was named the Browns head coach and Hoyer is now his starting quarterback.  Pettine understands the importance of cultivating quality relationships.
  5. Leaders Must Continually Improve In The Area Of Self-Leadership – Smart leaders focus more on self-leadership than tasks and assignments.  If you improve as a leader, the tasks and assignments take care of themselves.  When interviewed for the book The Zappos Experience, employee Faby Guildo-Romero said, “Most of the time a customer wow (experience) comes at no cost.  I actually think it’s best when I don’t focus on what I can ‘give’ customers to wow them but instead on how I must ‘be’ to wow them.”

Which one of these five areas do you need to continually improve in as a leader?

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