Manage Yourself

July 3, 2012 by  Filed under: Management 

Today’s article is coated with my advice more than some of my others – it’s just a simple tip for employees, managers, leaders, entrepreneurs, etc. Newbies, been-arounds, and all the in-betweens. Basically, this is for anyone in business that wants to be better.

It took me awhile to learn the lessons I’ll list below, and maybe you’ve already caught onto what you need to do to take responsibility for your own professional development. But, in the case you haven’t – I’m going to list a few of the easiest ways to ensure you’re evolving as a professional. Unfortunately, too many look to others to teach them everything – so they wait until they have a great boss or are given the opportunity they swear will release their real potential. Instead, what I tend to believe works best, is when we take ownership over our own development: when we lead ourselves by looking inward.

There are many ways to do this, but let me list a few of the simplest strategies.

#1 – Read blogs. Buy books. Watch the news.

Sounds simple, right? Exactly. I would hope most of you are already doing this, but sometimes there’s so much out there that we don’t even start the search for good material because we’re overwhelmed by how much extra information there seems to be. Find your favorite resources and read them daily.

#2 – Join a professional group or association.

The best way to network is to put yourself in situations where you are bound to meet other business professionals. This expands your list of contacts and provides ample opportunity to put yourself out there professionally.

#3 – Take a training course or educational class that you believe would benefit you.

What are your passions? What excites you that currently doesn’t play a role in your profession? Pursuing ventures outside of our careers is necessary, otherwise we come to resent what we’re doing for work because we aren’t doing what we want outside of work.

#4 – Find a mentor.

Who is someone you respect and admire? What is something you want to learn from them? How can you approach them and ask them to mentor you? These are all things to think through if you want to find someone that can be alongside you during the process.

#5 – Make a list of goals.

Studies show that those who write their goals down are much more likely to achieve their goals. When we’re working long hours, it can be easy to forget about all we want to accomplish – because we wonder when we’re going to find the time to achieve these things. But, that’s the key: when you write them down, they become more tangible, realistic and within your reach. Don’t forget about all you want to do in the long-term just because you feel swamped in the short-term.

Yes, hopefully many others will help you along the way as a professional, but you should never bank on someone else doing the hard work for you. Take a few simple steps to get your development started.

Doug C. Watsabaugh, senior partner at WCW Partners, understands how to meet your unique performance challenges. With more than 20 years of experience, WCW Partners is a performance-improvement company that helps businesses revitalize their results and achieve record-breaking performance.

If you are looking to excel in sales, service or leadership, let Doug develop the capability in you!

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