1. You have to get up earlier than you want to
You want to be the first one at work. You have to be the one standing by the door, greeting your team as they get to the office. Part of your role as a leader is to influence your team’s spirit and to set the tone for the day. If you want any influence over that, you have to be there early! Setting the example to others is (obviously) a primary responsibility you have, and this is an easy way of getting your team there early, too. Another great reason to rise a little earlier is to plan. There’s a reason why Stephen Covey wrote a whole book on his 3rd habit “Putting first things first,” and that’s because planning your day and preparing for what’s about to come, gives you more control over the outcome.
2. You have to be accountable for your actions
Accountability eliminates the time and effort you spend on distracting activities and other unproductive behavior. When you make people responsible for their actions, you’re effectively teaching them to value their work. When done right, accountability can increase your team members’ skills and confidence.
I go into detail on accountability in a video here
3. You have to be kind to people who have treated you badly
This is something we REALLY don’t like doing. “An eye for an eye,” right? No.
4. You have to deliver results when making excuses is an option
This is self-explanatory. We always have a choice when a challenge lies in front of us, and the choices you make will shape who you become as a leader.
5. You have to lead when no one else is following you… yet
Leadership is about doing the right thing even when no one else is watching (also in line with the definition of integrity). You also have to lead when no one else is watching. You have to be persistent in getting your message through when you feel like no one is listening. Somewhere someone IS looking, and it might change their life (and yours).
6. You have to give more than you get in return right away
Leadership is not a privilege; it’s a responsibility. Taking a salary cut, doing the “dirty work,” staying later. These things are inevitable. For everything you gain, something must be sacrificed.
7. You have to try and fail and try again
One word: persistence.
8. You have to run faster even though you are out of breath
Our brains are programmed to protect us, so there will come a time where you feel you can no longer continue. When it happens, you will have accessed only a portion of what you can actually do. Being tired and feeling over it means it’s the perfect time to push even harder. The best is yet to come.
9. You have to handle the stress, or you won’t be able to manage the success
10. You have to care more about others than they care about you