They say that to create a habit, all we need is willpower. Especially, if we want to brew a good habit, we require determination. I disagree. Let's remember for a moment, all the times we've been persevering, every single time that we asked with all our might that things went well, and those ones we insisted and insisted and we invested enthusiasm, time and money and in the end, things did not go our way. What happened? The reality is cruel, it is not about perseverance, it is about staying focused on what leads us to the goal: from business habits that are good, both for us and individuals and for the company or entrepreneurship project, to personal ones.
Popular wisdom tells us that we are creatures of habits and in the haste of life, nor do we realize. If we analyze ourselves, we will come to see that we usually wake up at the same time —there are people who wake up seconds before the alarm goes off —we brush our teeth, we have coffee with certain characteristics that we don't vary in the day to day and when working, we follow certain patterns. So why is it so difficult for us to turn those routines into good business habits?
The answer is probably not in the realm of business management theory, but in behavioral science or in any case, what our mothers or grandparents used to advice. The truth is, we tend to create habits in inappropriate ways. We start with extreme resolutions such as thinking about exercising, losing weight, becoming x or y, without laying the foundations that lead us to achieve what we want successfully.
It seems to me that a good way to start is by making use of what we already have. It's like we're joining something pre-existing and using it to catapult the outcome we're waiting for. How can I swim if I do not have a pool? For many of us, the morning routine is a very strong pattern of behavior. So, we have a great platform to start with. Therefore, as we take our first cup of coffee of the day, we can start mentally sorting out what achievements we want to achieve in the day; while we brush our teeth, we can raise one foot and practice physical balance.
One way to generate good business habits is to think big, but taking small steps. B.J. Fogg, the author of the book Tiny habits, claims that those who want to make huge portents face the need for a lot of resources, which are generally not at hand. Then the frustration overcomes. On the other hand, if we start by taking small steps, recognizing and using what we have at hand, it's easier to start. And, already on track, we can gain strength and speed.
While it is true that perseverance is not the only thing that is needed to generate a healthy habit—of all kinds and more in the business realm—it is a necessary element. Doing our daily routines and completing them every day contributes to the construction of solid management methods and they lead to good results. Thus, it closes a virtuous circle, when the results begin to germinate.
However, that is not the end of the road in the formation of good business habits. Many times, it is ourselves who put obstacles in the way. To do this, the haste is not good companions. We have to analyze and come up with the easiest way to do things. We must be relentless with what hinders us to achieve what we want, therefore, we must see what is hindering us, slows us down, annoys us. I insist, popular wisdom always has advice at hand.
- Keep your workspace clean.
- Leave the materials you're going to occupy at hand.
- Have a place for everything and everything in place.
- Write down what you want to achieve in the day. Have clarity on what you want to achieve.
- Check whether you got it or not.
- Ponder what led you to have the results of that day, regardless of whether they were good or bad.
- Don't dismiss the serendipities, rather use them in your favor.
- Correct what didn't go well.
- Applaud the daily hits.
One of the most important steps to generate good business habits is to take the time to evaluate the results without pre-established judgments. We can't take things for granted when they went well. We tend to ignore successes and beat ourselves hard to punish ourselves when things didn't go well, but we forget the pats on the back, the motivation phrases, the gratitude, the others, and oneself.
Undoubtedly, the best reward and the greatest evidence that we are generating good business habits is when this impacts the company's results: whether we reduce costs, save on expenses, increase revenue, decrease waste, we monetize time. In the end, as Michael Porter says, all business activity must impact and be focused on generating a greater profit margin.
It is not wrong to generate good business habits, because regardless of the above, they will generate harmony and a better work environment. Focusing our attention on ourselves and our work teams to analyze our daily activities and use them to generate better business habits will bring us performance methods that catapult us to the goal we set ourselves.
Who would say that Granny's advice would have business repercussions? The same applies to entrepreneurs. When we seek to be an unstoppable entrepreneur, we realize that it is not an easy task. If it were, everyone would be. But a good base to start with is our own habits and those of our team. It is worth reflecting and, if we are going to think big, it may be prudent for our steps to be short and constant.