10 Tips for Managing Yourself (Self-Leadership)

Self ManageIn the business world it is very important that you manage yourself well. Those that do will become the leaders of tomorrow. Managing yourself well is a prerequisite to managing others. Managing yourself means learning how to work with others in a productive and profitable way. It also means being focused on helping your organization to be profitable. Whether your goal is to move up in the organization, increase your own business bottom line or to gain more responsibility in your current situation you will want to produce excellent results. This takes constant self-monitoring and self-managing. Self-managing and self-monitoring also will help you to be happy at work. Here are some ways to do this:

  1. Be self-aware. Self-awareness is essential to understanding what leadership style works for you. Even if you are an individual contributor you will need to convince people that your contribution has merit and is valuable. That involves communicating and leading people to a conclusion that you can produce good results.
  2. Be accountable for yourself. Listen to those who give you feedback on your performance. Your manager, a mentor, a coach, and a colleague can help you to see where you are lacking. Listen carefully and make corrections when necessary. No feedback? Ask for it!!
  3. Be trustworthy and extend trust to your colleagues. That will help you earn their loyalty. Establish a network of people who help you and whom you help. When times are tough these are the people you can call on!
  4. Have a good work ethic. Be committed to getting the job done no matter what it takes. Be action oriented and a problem solver. Develop an expertise that makes you a valuable resource.
  5. Do your own skill assessment quarterly. Notice when you are missing expertise in a particular skill and find a class to take, a colleague to help you, or a mentor/coach/ trainer. With the rapid changes occurring in business today it is important to watch for new trends. Reading and studying on your own is a first step but when the skill takes on more importance be sure to get training. Don’t wait for your company to pay for it. Do it on your own.
  6. Don’t play the part of a victim or martyr. No matter what the issue don’t make excuses. Instead look for solutions. You have a choice in everything you do. Make the choice that shows you are proactive and a problem solver. Don’t dwell on the negative.
  7. Be self-disciplined. When you promise to deliver something in a particular time frame, be sure to do it. This will mean you will need to set up a time to get the work done and then be strong enough to prevent interruptions. Setting firm boundaries is also part of self-discipline. Follow the rule of under promising and over delivering. Self-discipline also involves setting appropriate standards. Your work needs to be of high quality always.
  8. Pursue hobbies and interests outside your work. They’ll provide relaxation and may inspire creative ideas for your work. Workaholics get too caught up in the details of work. They may be productive in a particular job but leaders must have time to see the big picture.
  9. Take a vacation. Too many people skip vacation time. It along with hobbies and other interests provides relaxation time. You will find that creativity comes during this down time.
  10. Get a coach. Coaches are skilled at helping you to understand what works for you. Looking for a promotion? Ask a coach to partner with you. Feeling your work is being overlooked? Hire a coach. Business or practice hit a plateau? Hire a coach. Successful people find ways to accomplish their goals. A coach is often the answer.

To write this list I used some material at the SCORE website. While this is a website for people who have a business you find lots of great material for those working in a business or nonprofit as well. As many of you know I am a SCORE Business Counselor. SCORE provides a free counseling service in the United States for small business owners.

Need a coach? I’d love to help you to manage yourself and become a leader. Call me at 781-598-0388 or email me at asparker@asparker.com


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