Hey busy leader. Working hard is not an end in itself. It’s about results. And you get those only if you respect the following natural law:
High performance is the optimal balance between effort and recharging.
It is a misconception to think that high performance means that you ‘always do everything at the highest performance level at the same time’. That is simply not possible. That’s not how nature works. And neither do you because you are not a robot. Sprinting a marathon won’t get you very far.
Do you know what a cheetah, the fastest land animal in the world, does all day? Laze around and gain energy for two crucial sprints a day. From zero to a hundred km/h in three seconds. Two chances per twenty-four hours to catch prey. Where failure is not an option because wasting energy results in exhaustion, malnutrition and ultimately starvation.
So what determines the success of the leopard, elite athlete, leader, professional and human? Exactly: peaking when you have to and recharging when you can! Recharging is an integral part of high performance, just like the effort in itself.
High performance requires focus
Many benchmark studies of high performers show that focus is a crucial success factor: focus on those activities with the greatest impact (leverage) on success. That means not focusing on side issues, and therefore not losing energy on side issues.
In our coaching, we use the following formula to help our entrepreneurs and business leaders select their leverage behaviour:
Leverage behaviour = Feasibility x Impact on desired outcome
The formula works very simply:
- Under ‘leverage behaviour’, write down all the activities that you, as a leader, think are important to do.
- For each activity, determine the:
- feasibility (will I be able to do this?) on a scale of 1-10
- impact on the desired result, on a scale of 1-10
- total score by multiplying both figures by each other
- Choose the 3-5 activities with the highest score and invest all your time and energy in them. These are your focus activities!
High performance is a chemical reaction
As a high performance leader, you know what your ‘moments of truth’ are. Your performance stress then increases and your pituitary gland is activated. That is a gland that produces stress hormones (such as cortisol) and puts your body and mind into the highest state of readiness, allowing you to deliver peak performance for the short term.
This is great, of course, except if you struggle with focus, letting go, delegating and getting the right balance between peaking and recharging. Then your body keeps producing stress hormones, you end up in a permanent survival mode, exhausting yourself and increasing the risk of burnout symptoms.
So it is important, after a period of peak stress, to give your pituitary gland and thus your body and brain some rest again by relaxing and resting properly.
Don’t schedule all kinds of meetings throughout the day (and evenings). People really do believe that you have heart for your customers, your organisation and your team. Skipping breaks and being constantly ‘on’ will not improve your performance. Be aware of your high performance balance between effort and recharging. Focus on activities with highest feasibility and impact.
Contact us below for coaching on business energy rituals. A session with Triple A People yields more energy than it costs!