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NextGen Magazine


If you want to be a Great Leader, You Need to Sleep

Jason Wong
Published Date:
Feb 16, 2016

Working LateIn today’s fast moving world, it can be difficult to make time for sleep (especially during busy season). After all, aren’t you more productive when you’re awake than when you’re asleep? Unfortunately, not getting enough sleep can adversely affect your leadership skills, according to the Harvard Business Review. Here’s how:

Losing focus. Sleep deprivation affects your ability to focus attention selectively, making it harder to avoid distractions and get your work done. In fact, being awake for 17 hours or more affects brain function on a variety of tasks as much as a BAC of 0.05%, the legal limit in many countries.

Lack of creativity. Sleep helps with many cognitive functions integral to the problem solving process, including insight, pattern recognition, and creativity. Studies show that a good night’s sleep can lead to new insights, and napping has been shown to aid in creative problem solving.

Damaging social skills. Being sleep-deprived can affect your social skills in more than just an ornery tone. When sleep-deprived, you’re more likely to misinterpret social cues and overreact to emotional events, and less likely to fully trust another person.