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Personal Management for managers by Peter Drucker

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Don’t Miss These Harvard Management Articles for managers

If you haven’t delved into the realm of management studies yet. here’s a concise compilation of 10 articles that all high-level leader and managers should be well-acquainted with. These articles cover essential topics such as leadership, strategy, innovation, change, personnel management, and now, personal management.

Article 1: Personal Management for managers by Peter Drucker

Throughout history, the most successful managers have consistently managed themselves. Even individuals with ordinary talents must learn to manage themselves and cultivate their thoughts. Over the course of a 50-year career, it’s vital to be cautious and prepared, meaning managers should know when and how to adapt their work processes and management style.

What Are our Strengths as managers ?

People often make mistakes when evaluating their strengths and weaknesses. In the past, this might not have been as crucial, but in today’s world, where individuals have the power to choose, it’s essential to identify your strengths. The only way to recognize your strengths is through feedback analysis. This means that when you make a significant decision, note your expectations for where you should be in 9 or 12 months, and then compare actual results with what you’ve written on day one.

Feedback analysis is not a novel concept; it’s a continuous habit that affects performance and results. If you consistently use this simple method (perhaps for up to three years), you’ll discover what your strengths are. This method demonstrates what you’re currently working on, where you’re facing challenges, where you excel, and where you fall short. It also highlights areas where you lack power and can’t perform well and where you excel. Prioritize your strengths first, putting yourself in a position where these strengths yield desired results, and, secondly, enhance your strengths.

In addressing the questions provided, here is an elaboration on each of them:

1. In Which Areas Do Managers Need to Improve Their Skills?

Managers often need improvement in several key areas to excel in their roles. These areas can include leadership, communication, time management, conflict resolution, and adaptability. Effective management often hinges on the ability to guide a team, communicate goals, and adapt to changing circumstances. Therefore, managers should continually work on enhancing these skills.

2. What New Skills Do Managers Require? Strive to Overlap These with Areas for Improvement

To remain successful in an evolving workplace, managers need to acquire new skills. In today’s dynamic business environment, digital literacy, data analysis, and innovation management are crucial. These skills should overlap with areas where improvement is needed. For instance, improving digital literacy can enhance communication, and mastering data analysis can aid in decision-making and strategy development.

3. Recognizing When Ego Leads to Ignorance and Overcoming It

Ego can be a significant obstacle for managers. It’s important to recognize moments when ego-driven overconfidence blinds you to your own limitations. For instance, human resource managers should acknowledge if they are not mathematically inclined, and they should rely on experts in this area. The key is to overcome the ego’s resistance to seeking help or admitting gaps in one’s knowledge. Additionally, a crucial point for managers is breaking bad habits. Bad habits hinder good performance and efficiency, especially in areas of strength. For example, someone with a habit of social indifference may struggle to use their skills effectively in an organization. It’s vital to identify and correct such habits that impede performance.

Feedback analysis is a tool that reveals your talents and skills, and it’s essential to heed the results. If you lack aptitude or skills in certain areas, avoid taking on responsibilities in those domains, and refrain from wasting time in areas where you lack expertise. Recognize that transitioning from mediocrity to excellence requires more energy and time compared to moving from incompetence
to mediocrity.

In summary, managers should continuously assess and improve their skills, recognize their limitations, and work on breaking bad habits to achieve better performance and effectiveness in their roles. It appears you’re exploring a range of important questions related to self-awareness, learning, and effective decision-making.

Here’s a breakdown and further elaboration on each of these questions:

1. How Do I Work Best?

Many people perform tasks in ways that may not be the most suitable, leading to suboptimal results. It’s essential to understand the conditions under which you produce better outcomes. For instance, you might consider whether you work better individually or in a team, under pressure or in a relaxed setting, in decision-making roles or advisory positions. Recognizing your optimal working conditions can significantly improve your performance.

2. Am I a Reader or a Listener?

People have different learning preferences. Some individuals prepare for public speaking by reading materials, while others prefer listening to information. It’s crucial to know your learning style. For instance, some leaders have speechwriters who prepare written speeches, while others have coaches who help them prepare through discussions. Misusing these approaches can lead to failure, so understanding your preferred learning style is essential for effective communication.

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3. How Do I Learn Best?

The second aspect of learning is understanding how you absorb information effectively. For instance, some people learn best by writing, while others excel at retaining knowledge through extensive note-taking. Some individuals may understand a subject best by explaining it to themselves out loud, and some thrive through discussions with others. To improve your learning process, it’s crucial to identify your most effective learning method.

The ultimate question to ask is, “How can I work more efficiently, as part of a team or individually? If working within a team is preferable, what type of role suits me best: decision-maker or consultant?” If you excel as a consultant, avoid trying to elevate yourself to the decision-maker’s role, as this could lead to failure.

4. What Are My Values?

Values shouldn’t be confused with ethics; they’re part of your value system. Just as individuals have values, organizations and managers have their values. To be effective, organizational values should align with personal values. Identifying your values and ensuring they align with your workplace and management style is crucial for long-term success.

5. Where Do I Belong?

Few individuals know from the start where they truly belong.

However, some can discover their place by answering three key questions:

· What are my strengths?
· How do I operate?
· What are my values?

Determine where you should collaborate and what skills or values you can contribute to your work. Finally, establish clear goals for the results you aim to achieve. These questions provide valuable insights into self-awareness, learning, and effective contributions in a professional setting. They can help you optimize your performance and make better decisions in your management roles.

The text emphasizes the importance of relationships in achieving effective results and the idea that most people excel when they collaborate with others rather than working in isolation. It encourages individuals to establish better relationships with their colleagues by discussing their strengths and work-related values. Building trust is considered the foundation of effective organizations, where both parties understand each other.

Furthermore, the text discusses the second half of one’s career. It suggests that, after mastering a specific job for a period, individuals may become dissatisfied, but they are likely to continue with it for another 20 years. This leads to an increased interest in starting a second career.

There are two primary approaches to preparing for the second half of one’s career:

1. Transitioning from one organization to another.
2. Preparing for a parallel career to manage the second half of life effectively.

The second approach involves proactively preparing for the second phase of your career before reaching the age of 40. It’s essential to have options and different roles to pursue, and finding a second domain can be an opportunity for leadership and success.

Finally, the text underscores the necessity of self-management and the revolution in human resource management initiated by managers. It encourages managers to lead this revolution and emphasizes that they need to find a second domain to be successful in the long run. This means creating a significant impact and a role in a different field, which can be a vital aspect of leadership and management. Overall, the text highlights the importance of relationship-building, the value of adapting to the second half of one’s career, and the need for proactive self-management by managers.

Author: Arash Beyazian Serkandi & Hamid Hoseinnasab

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Topic: Personal Management by Peter Drucker