I frequently talk with entrepreneurs and executives that are entirely self-taught. They are incredibly optimistic and have exceptional technical expertise in their industry. Their business skills are primarily learned on the job, and unfortunately many had ingrained bad habits much like I did when I was a young golfer.
I have played golf since I was ten years old and had suffered quietly in mediocrity for many years. I was self-taught, and my only instruction was the response that I received from my frequent errant shots and the pros on TV which I tried to emulate.
A few years ago, I finally admitted to myself that I needed to take lessons from a professional. I humbled myself, set aside some money, and reluctantly remade my golf swing. I’m happy to say that I am now in the top 5% of amateur golfers.
The difference was that I finally had the quality teaching that allowed me to be more successful. Frankly, I couldn’t get significantly better until I identified my weakness and an objective expert helped me correct the ingrained swing flaws that blocked my potential.
Bad work habits are much the same as a bad golf swing. You won’t correct them until you admit there is a problem and seek the help you need.
Breaking Bad Habits
To successfully change bad work habits, you have to think hard about how dissatisfied you are with your current performance. You won’t be motivated enough to change until you amp up your dissatisfaction. For example, if you are overweight, looking in the mirror more often might inspire you to make the change.
In terms of your bad work habits, you’ll want to find a way to remind yourself of the shortcomings they bring. If your pattern is procrastination, track your time so you can see how much you’re wasting. If it’s poor communication, write down examples of times that lack of communication cost you a business deal or caused problems with a coworker.
Additionally, you need a clear vision about what success will look like once the change is made. In our weight example, you might visualize yourself fitting into a new smaller size in your wardrobe. For business, envision the way your workday could look once your habits are broken. You won’t change until you can picture how much better the future might look.
Bad Work Habits and Accountability
Many times, like in my case, you need help from an objective outsider to identify your bad work habits and create a solution. That’s where a business coach comes in.
A business coach can help you identify your bad work habits and develop a short list of alternative strategies, tasks, and ideas. A coach can provide ongoing surveillance and check-ins, so you don’t fall back into your old bad habits. A coach can also help you maintain a positive mindset and outlook when you feel frustrated or overwhelmed.
So the lesson for business owners and executives is: there is a faster and more efficient way to improve your skills. You will significantly benefit from quality professional coaching that will help you see and correct your business swing flaws.
Don’t make the same mistake that I made. Changing habits is possible if you take responsibility. Suspend your disbelief that you can do it yourself, and find a business coach that can identify your opportunities and help you find your way to greater success.
Oh, by the way, I can do all of that for you. Fill out my contact form for a free chat to discuss how we can put these principles to work for you.