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Managing Oneself: The Key to Success Essay

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Updated: Feb 21st, 2022

Introduction

A leader is, first and foremost, a person embodying certain qualities. Regardless of the chosen leadership style, one’s personality and abilities will always matter. To become a good leader, one has to assess their strengths and be prepared to work with all kinds of people, both as a partner and a guiding figure. The task is daunting, and a person might find themselves too flawed and unable to control personal needs, but it should not be discouraging. One should view any obstacle as a challenge that leads to self-improvement and a better understanding of oneself and the surrounding. As an inspiring leader, I will list the qualities which contribute to the role or hinder it and present various leadership and teamwork aspects that will help me improve.

Main text

As someone who strives to be a transformational leader, I have to assess my qualities that are beneficial for teamwork and inspiring others. I would say that I am a good listener who respects the other party and provides meaningful commentary based on the received information. It can be an invaluable asset while cooperating in a team, especially for a leader who wishes to implement the members’ input to the final product. However, if the suggestions are not productive, I will be able to highlight their faults without diminishing the contributors’ involvement. Another one of the qualities that I believe will help me coordinate the teamwork is my versatile knowledge and desire to fill any gaps. While working on something, I want to be confident about what my teammates and I are doing. Simultaneously, I do not mind if someone is more competent than me; my job will ensure that their potential is fulfilled. Thus, my ability to be a good speaker and versatile knowledge will positively impact teamwork.

Everyone has flaws, but for a leader, they can be fatal. While I believe myself to be emphatic, I can lack flexibility while insisting on what is best for a person or a group. My stubbornness may cloud my vision during critical decision-making, which may have drastic consequences for work progression. Another weakness is my tendency to avoid conflicts, which is sometimes helpful, but I find it a considerable impediment. Making compromises can be detrimental if it is done for the sake of appeasing the team members instead of focusing on the consequences for the final product. I may find it difficult to convince those against my proposals, although I do not expect such hostile situations to happen. However, this unpreparedness for emergencies is also unbecoming of a leader. Thus, I should find ways to either erase my drawbacks or decrease their impact on my role as a leader.

I have other qualities that can have different effects depending on the situation. For instance, it is difficult for me to express various emotions. On the one hand, it allows me to stay collected in most cases and employ logical reasoning. On the other hand, my absence of emotions prevents me from encouraging the team and easing tension. The latter could be more important in the grand scheme of things, so I should work on being more expressive. However, the ability to remain calm is also a useful asset, so I hope to continue using it to my best advantage. The second point I would like to emphasize is not having idols among famous leaders. It could be useful, as I will develop a personal leadership style without relying on another person whose level I may never reach. However, it is beneficial to have an example to follow during the early stages of being a leader, as overconfidence in one’s abilities might bring more harm than good. Overall, I possess a set of ambiguous qualities that can either help me or disrupt my work in a team.

In the pursuit to improve me, I analyzed how I prefer to learn, as my drawbacks currently come from insufficient knowledge. My favorite way to acquire new information is reading, although books are not necessarily my primary source. I find myself relying on the Internet the most and reading online encyclopedias or brief articles describing a certain phenomenon. While the possibility of the information from those sources being entirely or partially false is high, they provide a basic understanding of the topic for someone without any prior knowledge. Later, I may use more reliable means, such as journal articles or specialized literature. However, regardless of the source, the knowledge obtained by reading is theoretical. I may know how a specific leadership style works in theory, but I will not have the full picture unless I experience it myself. Thus, I receive essential information from reading, but it might not be enough to fully understand a topic.

Another important source of knowledge in writing, although I cannot say I write in the true sense. When I see a piece of information I must remember, I copy it to a newly created file, and in the best-case scenario, I might make edits. It allows me to filter unnecessary details and focus on the essential part. Written assignments such as this are also a way to gain knowledge, as I self-reflect and learn something new about myself, which I can later apply in practice. Compared to writing, listening is not relevant to me, as I prefer the visual means to receive information. For instance, if a podcast or a lecture has a transcript, I will only consult it. However, listening in a non-academic setting is another matter. For personal and group communication, I would prefer to talk instead of exchanging notes or messages. It could be related to the fact that with face-to-face communication, we receive additional non-verbal information, which can be instrumental in deciphering the message. Altogether, writing and listening are important components of learning for me, although their usability depends on the situation.

While contemplating how I receive new information, I realized that it is also essential to discuss what already know. However, what I mean is not facts, but various types of intelligence that a person supposedly possesses. Out of the ten I discovered, not all are relevant to my role as a leader. I would highlight spatial, verbal, interpersonal, and intrapersonal intelligence as the ones that are very likely to impact my leadership. As mentioned before, I prefer the visual way to obtain and memorize information, so I would say that my spatial intelligence is well-developed. I do not have any problems with my native language which would concern me, although I cannot say I am exceptional, so I assume that my verbal intelligence is at an adequate level. The interpersonal one should be high if I wish to succeed as a leader, and I already explained my shortcomings in social skills. Lastly, my intrapersonal intelligence is sufficient, as I tend to reflect quite often, although I tend to overestimate my abilities. Overall, I believe my intelligence is adequately developed but may have gaps.

The means to learn described above are all more or less theoretical, but a more certain way to tackle my drawbacks would be gaining leadership and teamwork experience. For instance, learning more about emotional intelligence can solve my issues, as I will see which parts are evenly developed and those requiring further work. However, I can improve the latter only by acting as a team leader. While I am aware that I cannot change my performance entirely, my teammates’ feedback can considerably help me see if I am improving, as some aspects are revealed to the observers (Drucker, 2017). Being more conscious of my strengths, I will focus on ensuring fruitful teamwork and putting more effort into expressing myself. It would probably be unnecessary for some leadership styles, and to some degree, they could be more suitable for me. However, I wish to be a transformational leader, as I find it a balanced role with much potential for a team. Therefore, I will continue to make efforts to become a helpful and inspirational figure with teammates rather than subordinates.

My determination to be an actively involved leader comes from the firm belief that everyone is equal and a person worthy of respect and attention. I do not want to consider people cogs in the machine whose sole purpose is to achieve goals. The process should be fulfilling as well, and it will be my aim as a leader to ensure it is the case. However, I also believe that every team member has certain responsibilities, although they should depend on a person’s abilities (Drucker, 2017). The leader must know everyone’s strengths and preferences and assign them roles accordingly. At first, it may seem unfair, as those who are more capable will be in charge of more difficult tasks, but this dilemma is also something a leader should resolve. Their responsibility is to mediate the relationships within the team and ensure that nothing undermines its integrity. I believe that it will help avoid conflicts I currently find difficult to manage. Thus, my conviction is that every team member is valuable and can be responsible for a specific part, but a leader should carefully mediate the process.

The issue of values was briefly mentioned while discussing my strength and weaknesses, but I find it appropriate to develop my stance on its corporate aspect. Out of long-term and short-term goals, I prioritize the former, although it does not always work in practice (Drucker, 2017). My current approach to team managing is non-confrontational, which I wish to amend, and the rushed decisions to prevent any conflicts might be detrimental to the goal planning in the long perspective. One may also think that if individual members disagree with the leader and the values shared by the team or the company, they should leave. While it sounds logical, I am convinced that a person in the leading position should be able to cooperate with anyone regardless of their views. As of now, I probably cannot follow this idea, but it is one of my main self-improvement goals. Thus, I am in favor of long-term goals and universal management that can work with various people.

Although I made it a point not to make idols out of famous leaders, I do respect those in charge of such companies as Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and others. Their work shows that strong adherence to inclusion and involvement principles leads to staggering results. I doubt that the company leaders are still as involved as they used to be at the start of their careers, but the lesson is that one should be ambitious. As a leader, I also want my team to be successful and reach seemingly unachievable heights. Therefore, I will not follow a particular example, but it is reassuring to know what fruits transformational leadership can bring.

Conclusion

In conclusion, I analyzed my strengths, weaknesses, and other aspects related to my abilities as a team leader. I discovered that I have several drawbacks that can hinder my leadership, namely, in the emotional and mediating fields, but I will strive to improve. My preferred ways of learning can offer great help, although the most important of self-improvement will happen while acting as a leader. I believe that such aspects as my intelligence, principles and values are also instrumental parts of my developing style. Many mainstream examples show that hard work eventually leads to great success, which encourages me to push my limits. In the end, writing this paper helped me understand how I manage myself and what I can improve, and I hope to put the findings into practice.

Reference

Drucker, P. F. (2017). Managing oneself: The key to success. Harvard Business Review Press.

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