- Why your work habits as a business owner matter
- 3 good work habits you should develop
- 3 bad work habits you should avoid
Q: Why are good work habits important?
A: Good work habits can make your life much easier by boosting efficiency, improving safety, and creating a solid company culture that helps new hires strive for high standards. With good work habits in place, you can avoid stress and feel confident about your long-term success.
A recent Gallup poll states that 80% of Americans are struggling with work-related stress.
Of that 80%, half aren’t quite sure how to manage it.
Fortunately, solid work habits aren’t just important for employees.
They’re also crucial for anyone who wants to experience success in their careers – including entrepreneurs and business owners across the United States.
Respondents to a recent study admitted that good work habits were responsible for about 50% of their total career success.
Sometimes, the simplest work habits make a difference.
According to various studies, people who make an effort to get up early experience higher levels of happiness, more professional success, more productivity, and even higher incomes.
This is just one example of a good work habit, and there are countless others.
Imagine if you mixed all of these work habits into one recipe for success. Would your wildest dreams seem a little more reachable?
Do these habits represent the difference between a failed small business and a multi-billion-dollar corporation?
There’s only one way to find out.
But before you get started with a new, healthy, and effective work style, you need to know which habits are most important.
In this article, you’ll learn about the top three work habits you absolutely need for entrepreneurial success.
But work habits can be just as detrimental as they are positive. These bad habits at work can ruin your entrepreneurial journey – so we’ll also shed light on the top three work habits you must avoid at all costs.
- Why your work habits as a business owner matter
- 3 good work habits you should develop
- 3 bad work habits you should avoid
Why your work habits matter as a business owner
If you haven’t yet started your entrepreneurial journey, but you plan to one day start a business, you should start by establishing good work habits. Meaning that until you transform your mindset and adopt these habits, it will be very difficult to succeed with any new business.
For most entrepreneurs, success doesn’t start with a small business loan or even new technology.
It begins with your mind.
Although this might seem like pseudo-scientific self-help nonsense, the shift towards a successful life is almost purely psychological.
Everything else falls into place once you have firmly decided that success is possible and you’re willing to push yourself past your furthest boundaries to achieve it.
Establish good work habits now, and you won’t be playing catch-up when you’re halfway through building a new company.
These seemingly simple habits will permeate every aspect of your company. When you own a company, you lead by example. Your drive and perseverance will inspire your team to achieve great things.
Establish good work habits, and it will have a very real effect on your company culture, your employees, and your ability to deal with unexpected challenges.
Work habits definition
But wait for a second…
What exactly are work habits, anyway?
Work habits are the behavioral, practical, and ethical patterns that affect an individual’s professional success.
These are things that you do regularly, and they become part of your professional personality.
Work habits can be either positive or negative, and they can be simple or complex.
Work habits examples
The best way to understand work habits is to examine a few examples:
- Punctuality: Showing up on time is one of the simplest things you can do to improve your work habits. Punctuality also involves meeting deadlines and handing in assignments on time.
- Communication: Communication skills are incredibly important in the modern era, especially as we veer towards automation in virtually all industries. Some people may be naturally good at communicating, but these skills can be learned and improved.
- Prioritization: Knowing what to focus on first and foremost is a simple but extremely effective work habit. Prioritization can help you become a more efficient entrepreneur. For example, it doesn’t make sense to answer your phones when you could be expanding your company and using your creative talents to solve problems. Prioritization also includes delegating tasks to others when necessary.
- Positivity: You don’t need any skill or intelligence to be positive. Positive people raise the morale of their team members and always remain optimistic. Whether you’re an entrepreneur or an employee, positivity can almost single-handedly push you toward success.
- Organization: Organization involves setting reminders, reducing clutter in your workspace, and keeping tabs on all of the various assignments you’re currently working on. Organization comes naturally to some, but this skill can be learned with patience and dedication.
- The ability to accept criticism: This is a very important skill for anyone who plans to work with others. Even entrepreneurs and business owners get it wrong sometimes, and they must be willing to accept their mistakes and listen to others who are giving them valid criticism. Only by accepting criticism can we genuinely improve ourselves.
- Planning: The most effective workers are always two steps ahead. Planning for the future is another very simple work habit that can help you build a company and strive for success with much greater efficiency.
- Respect: It costs you nothing to treat others with respect. Whether it’s your boss, a client, or the janitor, you should always be kind to others, raising them instead of bringing them down. Treat people with respect, and it will be much easier to build lasting, professional relationships.
- Reduction of distractions: Everyone gets distracted from time to time, but the most efficient people know how to reduce and ignore these distractions. One of the best work habits is to limit your phone use, focus on the tasks at hand, and refuse to give in to the multitude of distracting content on the internet.
- Safety: Safety is an essential work habit if you’re working in dangerous, hands-on situations. Business owners with an eye for safety can improve the efficiency of their companies and protect their workers. Accidents are always costly – financially, physically, and emotionally.
- Work/life balance: Balancing work and life is a challenge that many remote workers face today. Working from home can be comfortable and convenient, but work can become your entire life if you’re not careful. This work habit is becoming more important than ever before.
3 good work habits you should develop
There’s no denying that work habits are important.
But trying to develop dozens of different work habits simultaneously is an exercise in futility.
You’ll bite off more than you chew, and if you try to cultivate every single positive work habit, you’ll end up achieving nothing.
It makes much more sense to focus on three of the most important work habits to start with.
Nail these three work habits, and you can start gradually developing more until you become a truly well-rounded entrepreneur.
Here are 3 work habits you should develop:
Positivity might be the simplest work habit you can develop, but it’s one of the most important.
And it might not be as easy as you think to remain positive when you’re running a business.
Just consider all of the various challenges you’ll face as you build your business.
Pessimism and negativity are always just a stone’s throw away when you’re trying to succeed amidst inflation, economic uncertainty, and ever-changing technology.
Positivity is important because it’s impossible to succeed without it.
When you lose your optimism, you simply give up on your dream of starting a new business.
Many entrepreneurs have given up at the first sign of trouble, and the most notable success stories in American history are filled with challenges and seemingly unwinnable scenarios.
The legendary Colonel Sanders (yes, the man who started KFC) was a massive failure at the age of 65, having spent much of his life sleeping in his car and traveling the nation trying – and often failing – to sell his chicken recipes.
At the age of 73, he sold the Kentucky Fried Chicken corporation and raked in millions.
Bill Gates’ first company was Traf-O-Data, and it was a laughably pathetic failure. The product didn’t even work, but that didn’t stop Gates from continuing and becoming one of the richest individuals on the planet.
Richard Branson is completely dyslexic and received incredibly poor grades in school. He later went on to develop Virgin Records and one of the most successful business empires in the world.
Steven Spielberg was rejected by USC’s film school. He went on to create some of the most iconic films of our generation.
All of these people share one thing in common:
Incredible levels of positivity.
They might have felt discouraged at times, but they never gave up.
Reduction of distractions:
Although there are many ways you can boost efficiency as an entrepreneur, reducing distractions is perhaps one of the most relevant in the modern era.
The sheer amount of information we have at our fingertips is mind-blowing. Just a few decades ago, people simply didn’t have the same types of distractions as modern entrepreneurs.
When they went into their offices to work, the most distracting thing that could happen was likely an unexpected phone call.
Today, your phone is a never-ending source of buzzing notifications, advertisements, and social media addiction.
Even if you manage to leave your phone in another room, your computer is more than capable of providing distractions.
Think about all of the various websites you could visit if your mind wanders for even a second.
Having the self-discipline to stay focused with so many distractions at your fingertips is more challenging than many people realize.
But it’s astounding when you realize how much work you can get done if you eliminate distractions.
Most people tell themselves that they’re working for eight hours when they’re being productive a mere fraction of that time.
The challenge of achieving a healthy work/life balance is more difficult than ever before.
With so many people now working from home, it’s all too easy to let your work start to take over your life.
As an entrepreneur, you need to remember the most important aspects of your life:
Family, relationships, simple pleasures, getting in touch with nature and enjoying your favorite hobbies.
Your professional life might be interesting, but you can’t fall into the trap of letting your work become your life.
Create a healthy boundary between these two aspects of your existence, and you can avoid burnout while feeling more inspired to succeed with your business.
3 bad work habits you should avoid
Finally, let’s go over three bad habits at work that you should avoid at all costs:
The inability to accept criticism
When someone provides you with valid, constructive criticism, they’re not insulting you.
They’re trying to help you.
One of the worst work habits imaginable is failing to accept criticism and assuming that everyone who points out flaws in your business is wrong.
The best entrepreneurs know that building a business is a collaborative process. No one can do this alone, and you can save yourself from countless common mistakes by speaking with experienced mentors to improve your work style.
You should be encouraging criticism among your team members. Instead of making them feel like they need to walk on eggshells, let them know that they should raise their voices whenever they have concerns.
The best thing you can do is listen to criticism and do your best to implement it as you move forward.
Sometimes, it takes a second set of eyes to see glaring issues with your business. You might be unwittingly seeing everything through rose-tinted goggles, and your enthusiasm for your business might be blinding you to serious issues that must be addressed.
Poor communication skills
Poor communication skills can completely wreck new companies in the modern era.
With so much emphasis on automation, communication is quickly becoming one of the most in-demand skills among modern employees.
But communication skills aren’t just important for workers.
These skills might be even more critical for business owners and corporate leaders. If you can’t communicate clearly, no one is going to have any idea what you want.
As a leader, you need to give people clear directions.
Don’t just give them a vague outline of what you need to grow your business – provide them with a step-by-step guide of exactly how to proceed.
This doesn’t mean that you need to write 5,000-word emails to your employees. Overly-wordy communication can be just as poor as vague communication.
Solid communication skills can bridge gaps between extremely diverse team members, bringing people from different backgrounds together and providing a sense of cohesivity as you strive for success.
Multitasking is one of the worst habits imaginable in the modern world.
One study from the University of London found that people who try to multitask exhibit an IQ decline similar to those who stay up all night with no sleep.
According to various researchers, multitasking forces your brain to constantly switch gears, making tasks take much longer than they should. Some studies even suggest that multitasking can damage your brain.
While past studies have suggested that women are better at multitasking than men, more recent studies prove that this gender disparity is largely a myth.
The point is that it’s much better to take things one step at a time rather than attempting to do everything simultaneously.
The best entrepreneurs know that they need to break longer tasks into smaller, more manageable chunks.
Setting the foundation for success with Alliance Virtual Offices
Fortunately, many resources can help you develop your work habits and set the foundation for future success.
Alliance Virtual Offices helps you tackle many of the most important work habits while simultaneously deterring some of the worst work habits.
Our Live Receptionists help you reduce distractions by providing you with a trained remote worker who can answer your phone calls.
This allows you to focus more on the most important aspects of your business, such as branding, research & development, and talent acquisition.
You can trust your Live Receptionist to give a positive first impression while noting down important information and letting you know about urgent situations that require your attention.
Alliance Virtual Offices also helps you achieve a positive work/life balance with a Virtual Office, which provides a virtual address and Mail Forwarding.
A Virtual Office Address means that your home address stays off the public record, improving your security and privacy as you run your business from your residence.
All mail will go directly to your Virtual Office – which is a real place managed and operated by our staff. You can then pick up your mail or have it forwarded to you.
If you need to create a clear boundary between your home and work environments, why not visit one of our on-demand, flexible office spaces? You can use this space to host meetings, interview talent, or simply get out of the house.
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If you’re feeling the economic pressures of maintaining a physical office space, Alliance helps you stay positive, cut costs, and keep your business alive.
Using our online tools and resources, you can transition to a remote business structure and save thousands of dollars per year. Say goodbye to needless office rental fees.
One of the best ways to boost communication in your organization is to take advantage of our Virtual Phone Lines.
This helps you connect your entire team, whether they’re working remotely or at the office.
If you’d like to learn more about how Alliance Virtual Offices can assist your operation, be sure to reach out today and get started with cost-effective work habits for future success.