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At the beginning of every year, millions of people create New Year’s resolutions. Whether their goal is to get a promotion, be more organized, eat healthy, or even travel more, the results are still the same. According to University of Scranton research, only 8% of people who make resolutions actually are successful in achieving their goals. If you are one of the 8%, this article is not for you—it’s for the rest of us underachievers! So you didn’t achieve the goals you set at the beginning of 2014? That’s okay. Here’s what you do next.

Evaluate Your Goal-Setting Process
Goals are imperative to becoming a better version of yourself. As a leader, you need to be constantly growing, and setting goals are a big part of that. But, maybe you’re establishing the wrong goals. Take a moment to revisit the list of resolutions you made at the beginning of the year. How many, if any, did you achieve? What is the fundamental difference between the goals you accomplished and the ones you failed to see to fruition? Chances are the group of goals you had success with was the one that contained attainable resolutions with clear-cut guidelines and sufficient purposes to accomplish them. Don’t underestimate the power of motivation. “Become financially successful” or “become a better leader” aren’t easily defined goals. Finding traction to get going on fulfilling those is nearly impossible. Write out exactly what you want and need to do or be. Additionally, write out why you want to achieve the certain goals. The “why” will help you when the will to achieve is gone. Read More→

This week on Peak Performer’s Life, Walter Bond talks about successful people and the driving force behind the actions that led to their success.

According to Walter:

“I’ve been around all types of successful people, and I’ve experienced some success myself. One thing I know, if we want to be successful, we have to desire to improve. Some people have this misnomer that successful people just wake up and they’re successful. That’s not true. Success is a process and the only way you can become successful, the only way I can become successful, the only way anyone can become successful is to have the desire to improve.”

How do you maintain your desire to improve? How do you build the desire to improve among the people you lead? Let us know in the comments section below. Read More→

Open-office plans are a growing trend in the workplace. Rather than workers being confined to an individual office or cubicle, many companies are experimenting with tearing down the walls in favor of a more free-flowing work environment. Check out this infographic from SurePayroll, an online payroll service, for some great insight into the pros and the cons of an open-office plan. Read More→

Forget the Party and the Gift Cards, Cash Tops the Wish List

Express recently released the results of two polls on holiday bonuses revealing that what employees want and what employers are willing to give are often different things.

In an online poll, employees and job seekers were asked, “How do you wish your company showed appreciation to employees?” Twenty-seven percent said “cash bonus,” and 13% said “pay raises.”

Express received responses from 230 individuals who identify as “job seekers and those new to the career world.”

How Do You Wish Your Company Showed Appreciation to Employees?

  • Cash Bonus – 27%
  • Pay Raises – 13%
  • Days Off or Shortened Holiday Hours – 9%
  • Gift Cards – 5%
  • Gift Items Other Than Money – 1%
  • A Holiday Party – 1%
  • Other – 1%
  • A Combination of the Above – 35% Read More→

This week on Peak Performer’s Life, Walter Bond continues his message on making the most of your “off-season” and how important it is to becoming “bigger, stronger, and faster” in both your personal and professional life.

According to Walter:

“I know you want to get bigger. I know you want to get stronger. I know you’re pursuing excellence, but you know what? Let’s take a little time to celebrate. There’s something in your life that you can celebrate.”

How do you take time to celebrate? What effect does it have on your personal and professional life? What effect does it have on the people around you? Let us know in the comments section below. Read More→

Improvement is crucial in staying competitive in an ever-changing business environment. However, sometimes improving is easier said than done. To become a more effective leader in 2015, it may be time you go back to basics.

Focus on Yourself

Before you can be an effective leader, you must first be able to lead yourself. Take a self-assessment to determine what kind of leader you are—and be honest about your strengths and weaknesses. No one is perfect, and even the greatest leaders in history had weaknesses. You may not be able to change your weaknesses into strengths, but you can see them as learning opportunities. Lessen your weaknesses and build your strengths by focusing on what you’re good at and surrounding yourself with colleagues who complement you. One personal characteristic that can be a morale killer is being too hard on yourself. Your team will notice your negativity and it may spread throughout the office. Focus on being better to yourself and then turn to your team to lead them to do the same. Read More→

Making the Right Turn

Most change and improvement comes in small steps and minute increments. I grow tired of politicians, critics, and commentators who respond to good ideas by proclaiming, “That suggestion won’t solve the entire problem.”

I have a friend and colleague who is a well-known author and speaker. He is fond of explaining, “One hundred 1% solutions are as good as a 100% solution.” Long-term success rarely comes from the grand-slam homerun or the 100-yard touchdown run. It, instead, comes from moving the runner to first base or the football down the field.

Recently, I read about an amazing breakthrough improvement made by United Parcel Service. UPS saved over $25 million in a decade, delivered more packages in a shorter time, and improved safety while lowering their carbon emissions’ impact by simply routing their trucks to cut out left turns. An enterprising person at UPS discovered that by using the computer to establish more efficient routes that incorporated a series of right looping turns instead of left turns, which force drivers to cross traffic and wait for lights to change, the company cut costs, improved safety, and increased profits. Read More→

This month on Peak Performer’s Life, Walter Bond begins a new series of discussions on the desire to improve. During the next few weeks, he’ll share his unique insight on this topic each Wednesday in a new motivational video here on Refresh Leadership.

Today’s message, the first in the series on the desire to improve, Walter discusses “the off-season road to success.”

According to Walter:

“Pro athletes have an off-season, why not you? Have you ever thought about it? … Could you imagine what you could do with your life if you got five months off?”

Check out Walter’s full message below:

What could you do with an “off-season?” What changes could you make in your professional life? In your personal life? What affect would some time off have on your business? Let us know in the comments section below. Read More→

Though winter doesn’t start until Sunday, Dec. 21, some of you have already been hit by Jack Frost! As you buckle down for a long winter, here are five things to do this month!

Plan an Office Holiday Party

December is a great time to spread holiday cheer with friends and family. So as you celebrate the holidays this month, be sure you are sharing the same cheer you have outside of work with those in the office. Decorating and planning holiday parties are great ways to enjoy workplace camaraderie and celebrate a successful year.

Make Your Resolutions Stick

Every year, millions of people participate in the art of resolution making. However, according to research by the University of Scranton, only 8% of people actually achieve their New Year’s goals. It’s one thing to make a list of what you want to achieve—it’s a whole other animal to actually follow through. This December when you’re making a list of what you resolve to accomplish, set up steps of how to achieve them. In 2015, vow to be a part of the 8%. Read More→

Looking Back: The Top 10 Refresh Leadership Articles From 2014

We’re coming in to the final few weeks of 2014, and what a great year it has been! Are you on track to meet your goals? Are you prepared to start 2015 off with a bang? December is a great month for reflecting on all that has been accomplished over the course of the year and to brace ourselves for the new year that’s quickly approaching.

In the spirit of looking back—check out some of the top Refresh Leadership articles from 2014!

4 Ways You Could Be Killing Your Employees’ Productivity - Whether you realize it or not, your actions are one of the key factors driving workforce engagement and it’s important to understand how they may affect your people.

The Results Are In: Most Common Reasons for Terminating an Employee - We asked our readers about their most common reasons for terminating an employee. Nearly 1,200 respondents weighed in, and the results were overwhelmingly conclusive. Read More→