How Determined Are You?
Have you noticed that many of the high achievers that you take notice of often attribute their success to determination? Other factors are at times referenced when we analyze how someone or how a team has reached a certain level of success. However, the one striking similarity among all successful people is determination.
Determination to start and see through a task or an idea to fruition is often what separates the high achievers from the rest of the pack. Determination is what keeps the young U.S. Marine moving forward during training when he/she has not had any food for four days and has been enduring forced marches, long periods of no sleep and other hardships just so they can call themselves Marines.
Your determination can inspire the rest of your team to drive further to levels of excellence they did not know they had. When challenged with hardships or obstacles, how can you as a leader convey your determination to your team?
- Be accurate with the challenge you are facing. Your team is made up of intelligent people who need to what kind of challenge they are facing. Giving a false sense of security or certainty will cause them to doubt your or their interpretation of the facts and ultimately your ability to lead. Remember, people can handle bad news; they cannot deal with uncertainty or messages that do not fit the facts.
- Communicate that each member is part of a team. Stress can cause one of two things to happen to a team. It will either be everyone for themselves or they will pull together. As a leader, you need your team to close ranks and not fracture. The best way that leaders keep their teams focused and determined on an objective is to make sure they communicate timely and accurate information that reinforces the value of each member to the team.
- Reduce distractions. The wise leader knows that he or she has to focus on the challenge on hand. Information, tasks or responsibility not directly related to the task in front of them has to be delegated or put aside until they have accomplished their goal. George Washington did not visit his home for six years while he was leading the Continental Army. He delegated the affairs of his large estate to his wife and several managers so that he could remain focused on defeating the British.
- When entering a fight, have the faith that you will finish it. When accepting a challenge that will require the very most of you, rise to the challenge by setting the tone that you and your team will be the ones to finish the fight. For example, one of the first public addresses that Churchill made when he was put in charge of the British Government and shortly before the Battle of Britain was to deliver what has become known as the “we shall never surrender” speech. That address solidified the Britain’s resolve that they were in for a long and bloody fight but that they would not surrender to the Germans under any circumstances.
Coach’s Wrap Up
Determination is a mindset of staying focused and not letting up until you have reached your objectives. Leaders and business owners have to have the determination to see themselves through the slow or hard times. Those that are successful in leading their teams through these periods, when giving up would be easier than moving forward, do so by accurately projecting the vision of what the end reward looks like and why the fight is worth that reward.
How do you keep the spirit of Determination when obstacles get in your way? What tips and tricks do you use when installing determination into your team?