Successful leaders usually have some qualities that they can rely on to get themselves through challenging situations. One of the most important, and easiest to cultivate, is perseverance. Why is perseverance important in leadership? What you can do to develop it?
In a nutshell, perseverance is the capability of continuing something despite difficulty or opposition. It’s been shown that people who are persistent exhibit a number of desirable traits such as dependability, toughness in mind and body, and resilience when faced with adversity.
Persistence is an important key to leadership. Like leaders of the past, some of today’s managers and politicians seem more concerned with whether they will be able to succeed than on whether they should try.
Leaders who cultivate perseverance can expect success as they continue on their course toward achieving their aims. Those who don’t will probably never reach those aims. There’s no point being stubborn if you’re not going to be persistent! The trouble is that the persistence aspect of the trait tends to be underdeveloped in today’s youth.
Challenges you may face as a leader that perseverance will help with
As a leader you will face many difficult situations. If you don’t possess the trait of perseverance you’ll probably flounder and fail miserably, because you won’t be able to get the job done.
Here are some examples of some challenges you may be faced with:
1. Gaining respect from your team
Have you ever taken on a new job with people you didn’t know? It can be hard to get the respect that leaders need if they’re not persistent enough.
Remember, you’re not just trying to win over the team members with your ideas and plans, but also with your attitude. You need to show them that you are sincere in what you want to do and help them understand why it must be done.
If you don’t possess the trait of perseverance, chances are you won’t be able to display it because it’s not something that can easily be faked.
2. Not hitting your targets
You may have a great sales team, but if they don’t believe in you they won’t push hard enough to hit your sales goals.
If someone doesn’t have this trait of perseverance they will give up easily when facing a challenge. One of the reasons why many people fail in life is because they don’t push themselves hard enough to achieve their aims. The world is full of people with big dreams but little perseverance.
3. Not doing enough
Ever set yourself a goal to become better at your job? If you don’t have the trait of perseverance, you may not feel good about yourself when you don’t meet it. You might even start doubting yourself.
The most successful people in life are those with this trait of perseverance because they always push themselves to do their best and become better than they were yesterday. This is what sets them apart. And so it does for you as a leader.
4. Poor performing team members
If you don’t have the trait of perseverance, you might have trouble motivating the team members who aren’t performing well to come up with their best performance.
This misconception that you can only motivate people by giving them rewards is false. The most successful leaders understand that being persistent is being able to build up a relationship between themselves and the people they are leading. They do this by being consistent in both their behaviour, as well as their words and actions towards them.
How to cultivate and develop perseverance (and why)
Here’s how you go about doing it:
First and foremost, you need to be persistent.
You need to understand that persistence is the key to your success, and that without it everything will become futile. That persistence is what makes you a leader.
It’s why leaders from the past who were dogged in their pursuit of success are remembered. It’s why many of them were loved and admired by their followers. And it’s why perseverance will be a great trait to develop in yourself as a leader.
A few factors will help you develop this trait: 1) understand its importance, 2) acknowledge the situation and 3) reflect on how you can overcome it.
Have thorough planning
Planning will help you be steadfast when you’re in the middle of your project. Without planning, you’d probably give up when faced with difficulties along the way.
Developing perseverance is about overcoming obstacles that would stop you from achieving your goal. For example, if you were to ask yourself ‘how can I get this project completed by Friday night?’ instead of ‘how can I get this project done?’
With this attitude, it’s likely that you’ll take time out to plan how to get your job done. Planning doesn’t have to be a long process but it needs to be done to be able to keep you on track.
Setting stretch targets on top of your goals
Instead of setting your deadline in stone, set a target by which you want to exceed. This will encourage you to do more than what’s required to hit your goal. Doing this will also mean that when you hit your target, it’ll be significantly greater than what was originally intended.
Setting stretch targets will help you become much better at stretching yourself in areas where you don’t feel confident. Asking yourself ‘how can I get this done?’ can hinder your progress if you don’t have the trait of perseverance.
It’s much better to ask ‘how can I get this done without breaking myself?’ This will keep you on track and will keep you motivated to keep pushing on.
Being a great leader is no small feat. It takes a lot of knowledge and discipline to be able to offer the right advice to your team. But you don’t need that. All you need is perseverance and a commitment to helping others succeed.
My recommendation is that you start honing in on this trait right now. Be diligent with your planning and set stretch targets in order to help yourself develop this trait in yourself, and remember: ‘It’s better to ask forgiveness than permission’.
Gaining the respect of your team and making a positive impact on their lives is worth all the hard work.
If you’re looking to get better at being a leader looking into the power of adopting the growth mindset which will help you to constantly learn and improve.
If you’re not a leader then you can use this trait to push yourself forward in life and achieve all of your goals. By focusing on what you’re able to do instead of what you can’t, you’ll develop a more helpful attitude towards improving your performance.
The importance of perseverance is a key trait for any leader who wants to make a positive impact on their team.