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Self-Management: Lead Yourself Well Before Anything Else

Nothing makes a better impression on your leader and your coworkers than your ability to lead yourself well. This gives you credibility, which reduces conflicts among employees and with their bosses.

To lead yourself well means being able to manage yourself, making better choices by thinking like a leader, and developing a good attitude.

Credibility Through Self-Management

People usually put emphasis on decision making and not enough on decision managing. As a result, they don’t have enough discipline, focus, purpose, and intentionality. We don’t have to make good decisions every day, but we need to make a few crucial decisions in the most important areas of life and then manage them daily.

  • Manage your emotions.

Sometimes showing your emotions can be a good thing because it helps people know what you’re feeling. It can motivate them. However, sometimes you need to control how you show your feelings. The point of managing your emotions is that you should put others first. Think about what your team needs, not what would make you feel better.

  • Manage your time.

First, decide every day which tasks are most important to you and handle them first. Then, ask yourself how much time the task is worth before you start and try to finish it in that time frame.

  • Manage your thinking.

If you find you don’t have time to stop and think during the workday, then try writing down three or four things that need to be mentally processed or planned. Once you have done that, find some time later when you can think about those items. This may need to be after work hours.

  • Making Better Decisions.

Self-leadership also includes thinking and making decisions like a leader. Here are some things to keep in mind in order to develop these skills.

1. Think long term. If you want to be a better employee and a leader, you need to focus on more than just the current task. Good self-leaders need to look ahead. This determines whether your organization will be as successful tomorrow as it is today.

2. Look within the broader context. Think about how something will affect those next to you, above you, and below you.

3. Push boundaries. Self-management is being able to follow through with the rules and plans you set for yourself, but leadership is about pushing things forward, which often means thinking outside the box. Try to subtly push boundaries, but don’t be pushy.

4. Develop and keep a great attitude. People who work for bad managers don’t get the recognition they want and deserve. It’s difficult to stay positive in those circumstances. Not everyone will appreciate the work you do, so it’s critical that you do. You can do this by valuing your work and continuing to give your best. Try to stay in the present. Embrace the compliments of your colleagues. Remember that there is no better compliment than acknowledgment from someone whose position, situation, or experience is similar to yours. Everyone likes to hear kind words from the boss, but the praise of a coworker who’s walked in your shoes really means more.

Discover the best way to nurture employees who know how to lead themselves, consistently connect with your leadership team, and predictably turn them into highly engaged employees. Contact me for some complimentary advice or additional reading material. Book an appointment at or call me at +1 (604) 943-0800.

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Inscape Consulting Group
Greg Nichvalodoff, BSc. BM (Honors), MBA, PCC, CMC
Office: 604.943.0800
Mobile: 604.831.4734