In the business world, if you don’t know the basics of how to manage yourself, then you’ll struggle to be able to lead a team effectively.
Continuous emphasis is put on how to properly lead a team or how to get the best out of the team who look to you as their leader. However, it is also good to highlight the importance of a manager getting the best out of themselves.
There is often a high standard that a leader will expect their team to live up to, so it is only sensible they themselves can live up to it as well. If they are attempting to seek better results from the team, then the questions regarding behaviour, attitudes and skillset should first drop at the leader’s doorstep.
Ask people what makes people a lousy leader, and one answer will always reappear – the ability to be accountable for their decisions and actions.
A person is accountable when they able to deliver on their commitments and be responsible for themselves readily. This, of course, relies heavily on their ability to manage themselves and understand their duties and responsibilities, as well as instances where they may have even made mistakes.
Yet as a leader, it even goes beyond this as accountable leaders will want to assume ownership of the performance of their entire team.
A bad leader will struggle with this and often pass the buck to others to avoid taking the blame or hide from accepting responsibility. This will harbour discontent in the team and show the leader as ill-fit to manage themselves or the team properly.
Managing Personal Goals
Leaders will set goals they want their team to fulfil, but only the best managers will also be setting goals for themselves.
Why is this so important? It is crucial as it means the person is showing the right attitude to improving yourself and are correctly managing themselves with the ethics that they will want to instil in their own team.
If you want to start managing your own personal goals, create targets for yourself that are simple, straightforward, and above all else, contribute to the success of the larger team, as well as being in line with their goals – ultimately creating a win-win situation.
A good leader will also influence their team to hit those goals, and it is no different when the goals are personal. Whatever you would usually do to reward or encourage a team regarding their aims, apply the same mindset to your own.
Having a Mentor
Managing yourself doesn’t end with just your own abilities. Managing yourself also involves finding a business mentor who can improve those skills and develop knowledge.
Mentorship is something you have to engage in manually and isn’t something that will miraculously happen by itself. The impetus needs to come from the individual to initiate a relationship, invest time in building a connection and act on the knowledge that they are being given.
Finding the right mentor can be difficult and will be a time-consuming and potentially frustrating process.
However, once the right mentor is found, the skills picked up will be invaluable in discovering more effective ways to lead your team and drive them to success.
Reacting to feedback
Are you willing to admit when you are wrong? Part of managing yourself means considering other viewpoints when colleagues challenge your assumptions. Only a strong leader will embrace that feedback and be able to alter their stance accordingly if needs be.
Being a leader doesn’t mean you are not still part of a team. This takes a lot of self-awareness, which is not something everything can boast about having, as well as ultimately a willingness to improve.
The best leaders are the ones who crave feedback as they know they can use it as a tool to manage themselves and how they assess the way situations are analysed.
Set up an environment in your workplace where positive feedback is invited to both yourself and your colleagues. It will reap huge benefits on everyone involved.
Investing in yourself
Seeking improvement in yourself involves spending a lot of time, effort and value in where you want to be in the future.
Skills are honed through hard work, and a good leader will understand that managing the work they put into themselves is as crucial as anything else they do.
Investing in yourself in can be anything from reading a book that furthers your knowledge, taking a course that teaches you new talents or even networking where you can engage with fresh minds and discuss ideas with someone outside your usual remit.
Any of these will see you working towards what you want as well as managing yourself and your future successfully.
Business Owner, Entrepreneur, Investor and Mentor
Originally from New Zealand, and now living and working in the UK, Haylee Benton is an entrepreneur with 12+ years’ experience in creating sustainable business growth, for her own start-ups and as a manager and director at multi-million-pound organisations.
By age 22, Haylee was running a £2 million a year signage company which, within 4 years, she grew to £3.5 million / year. Whilst successfully running her second signage company, she launched PamperPad, a platform where people can find top rated beauty treatments nearby. She’s also launched, and sold, a successful signage and events company in NZ.
But one of her proudest pursuits is the launch of The Silver Fern group, a trio of bespoke beauty salons, including hair, skin and spa. The success of these salons has gone so well that she’s now in plans to open up more sites next year.
On top of all of this, she’s a mentor for Virgin Start Up Business, mentor’s other female entrepreneurs and frequently speaks at events. She’s also in the process of launching a brand-new luxury ladies golf clothing range.