You must have a level of discontent to feel the urge to want to improve.
Self-improvement is part of the human experience; we all have things we’d like to change about ourselves. And every leader knows you have to constantly adapt and improve if you want to achieve greatness.
Whatever you’re working toward, it’s important to constantly assess, evaluate and appraise where you are and where you want to be. It’s something you do because you want to be a better leader—a better person—not only for your own sake but also for the sake of those who are loyal to you and work hard to achieve their goals and objectives.
Great leaders make self-improvement a daily practice. Here are some of the ways they go about it—see what makes sense for you and try incorporating it into your daily routine. Your leadership and your life will benefit.
They assess themselves honestly. In order to improve, you need to know what needs improvement. Notice how you behave in different situations. Look at your behaviour and attitudes objectively and you’ll know what to keep and what to leave behind. You can’t be a better person if you don’t know what you need.
They educate themselves continually. Unsurprisingly, many leaders are avid readers. There is so much to learn and so much to understand, and reading a book is like having the best teachers and the smartest mentors from throughout history on demand.
They welcome feedback approvingly. The best leaders understand that feedback is the breakfast of champions, and they seek critique from trusted people who are able to get straight to the point. Direct feedback is the quickest way to learn how to improve.
They embrace change repeatedly. Great leaders always want to improve themselves, so they remain open to change. They know it’s hard to move forward if you aren’t willing to change. Cultivate your own willingness to change with thought, effort and intent.
They work toward their goals daily. The best leaders understand the power of consistently working toward a goal. If you can commit to one daily practice, make it this: do one small thing every day that will get you a little bit closer to where you want to go. Every time you accomplish a goal, you’ll learn more about yourself and figure out more ways of self-improvement.
They ask for support frequently. Top leaders know the benefits of having good counsel and smart advocates, and even the best leaders may have a coach. We know one of the things our clients value most in our coaching is simply having an impartial sounding board, giving them a chance to sort things out before they present their ideas.
They express appreciation regularly. Great leaders understand that gratitude is the basis of self-improvement. They know that if you can be thankful and appreciate what you have instead of obsessing over what you wish you had, you can focus on making yourself better and expressing your thanks to the people around you.
In leadership it’s not as much about who you used to be as it is about who you choose to become.