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6 High-Performance Habits That the Happiest Executives Have in Common

What is it that turns average people into high-performance achievers who can propel a company to its highest results? According to best-selling author and performance coach Brendon Burchard, the steps are deceptively easy. He advocates the development of six “high-performance habits,” as follows:

1. They seek clarity
As opposed to pronouncing conclusions, high performers learn to listen, observe and ask questions. They seek to understand all sides of the story and to view every work situation from others’ points of view. The result: strengthened culture.

2. They have an infectious energy
High performers develop the ability to keep their own energy high and lift the interest and stamina of others around them. The high-performance result: sustained growth.

3. They seek out problems
High performers learn to habitually observe challenges that arise and consider the ways to ease or correct them instead of mindlessly or habitually accepting the status quo as “all there is” or “good enough.” The result of this habit: increased innovation.

4. They look for an easier way
It perhaps no surprise that people who increase their productivity experience high satisfaction and confidence. Time flies by when you have a sense of accomplishment and pride in achieving results. For the organization, of course, this habit leads to increased ROI.

5. They share what they’ve learned
The highest performing individuals aren’t content to operate within a vacuum but communicate their lessons proactively (both good and bad) with a genuine intent to uplift others. This habit influences others for good. It also reduces political and protective behavior, both within and outside the organization.

6. They demonstrate courage
This is the habit some refer to as the willingness to “put yourself out there,” even when it’s difficult or risky to do. Speaking up for a colleague or championing an unpopular position takes courage. Doing so on a regular basis produces collective momentum as others are inspired and compelled to join in.

Lasting effects of high-performance habits
It’s not hard to see how consciously forging these habits will grow an organization. But here’s the surprise: while it may sound like tedious work to practice these habits, Burchard has noted after 30,000 coaching sessions from his High-Performance Institute (HPI) through 46 countries, participants achieve average performance scores of 9.6. Regardless of skills coming into the program or region of the world, with even a bit of consistent practice, everyone who practices the habits excelled. A workforce of high performers, of course, produces high engagement, strengthened culture and a higher-performing organization.

But now for the biggest surprise: Research of 174,054 participants in 190 countries shows a direct correlation between high-performance habits and happiness, confidence, and work/life satisfaction as well. This is true despite working harder and accomplishing more than before. A second study reiterates this finding and further discovers that participants trained in these habits increased their income as well as the quality of their interpersonal relationships (areas typically thought to be mutually exclusive as the common assumption is that more income and career achievement leads to less lowered attention on relationships with others). Career impact, work quality and life satisfaction significantly increase in close to equal amounts (.58, .60 and .62, respectively).

The conclusion is clear: For a happier life and a more successful career, learn and practice these six habits each day.

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