Management is a Journey®

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No One is Coming to Save You

In This Article

(Click the links below to move easily to sections of this article)

You’re Responsible For Your Own Life
You’re Responsible For Your Own Career
You’re Responsible For Your Own Leadership Development


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You’re Responsible For Your Own Life

a road sign with the words "success ahead"In my early teenage years, I learned that if I wanted to make my life worth something then I would have to do it myself.

During those early years, I realized that I would not be able to depend on others as I had hoped.

It was a life lesson that was both very powerful and very painful at the time. The core truth of that lesson was that no one was coming to save me! If I wanted to be successful in life, I would have to do that myself.

As I’ve made my way to this good day, it’s a lesson that is as true today as it was when I was a young man.

It’s a valuable life lesson to understand that no one is coming to save you.

People will move in and out of your life and if you depend on them to save you, then you will be disappointed. Some good people may help you along the way, but never forget that no one is coming to save you (even those good people who help you).

Ultimately, you are responsible for your own success in life.

If you’re waiting and looking to others to save you or to fix something in your life, here’s my advice: Don’t do it!

If you’re a grown man or woman, you are responsible for your own life. The best way to get your life where you want it to be is to take control of your own destiny.

If you're a grown man or woman, you are responsible for your own life. Don't look for others to save you or fix you. Click To Tweet

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You’re Responsible For Your Own Career

a compass with the needle pointing to the word careerWhile accepting that you are responsible for your own life is an important life lesson, it’s also an important career lesson.

Today, I want to explain how this powerful lesson relates to you as a manager and a leader of others.

As a manager, your ultimate success in your career will depend on how well you can work with your team to meet organizational objectives. Your boss, HR and others in your organization are constantly evaluating you in this area.

If you are struggling as a manager with any aspect of the people side of the business (motivating your team, delegating work to them, implementing change, or managing their performance), don’t look for others to come and save you.

In fact, you’ll be making a mistake if you believe that it’s your boss’s or HR’s responsibility to fix you as a leader.

In reality, it’s not their responsibility to fix any leadership gaps that you possess. It’s your responsibility.

Enlightened bosses and HR departments understand the value of devoting some organizational resources to helping managers with their leadership development. It’s great if you work in an organization like this. If you do, take advantage of the different resources available to you. Organizational leadership development activities can be invaluable to your managerial success.

Don’t make the mistake, however, of thinking that their help means that they are committed to saving your managerial career or fixing it.

Don't expect HR or your boss to fix any leadership gaps that you possess. While they may help you, that does not mean they are committed to saving your managerial career. Click To Tweet

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You’re Responsible For Your Own Leadership Development

silhouette of city and man with words associated with employee developmentSo, what does all this mean?

Are your boss and HR totally off the hook when it comes to helping you with your leadership development?

The answer is no! Your boss and HR should do all that they can to help you succeed as a manager.

Their ultimate responsibility is not to you however.  Their ultimate responsibility is to your organization!

As they work to help you with your development, they must also evaluate if you are up to the job. In other words, they need to answer the following question: Can you be an effective leader and manager of your people?

This means that they want a return for any investment in you. They want to know that you will be able to overcome any leadership and management challenges that you are facing with the people side of the business. If their assessment is that you are not up to the job of being a manager or leader of your team, you may find yourself without a job.

This brings us back to the main point of the article: you are responsible for your own success as a leader.

To ensure your success, it’s critical to take ownership of your own leadership development. Become proactive about your own development.

Here’s some things that you can do:

  • Take leadership and management assessments
  • Read management and leadership books
  • Go to leadership conferences
  • Join a professional association for your industry
  • Take advantage of organizational leadership development resources
  • Find a mentor

As you take these actions, be selective about your information sources. You can do this by reading reliable Internet sources, seeking advice from people with proven track records, and taking classes from credible sources (even if you have to pay for them yourself).

Also, be honest with yourself. You can do this by both admiting your mistakes and learning from them.

Finally, be open to learning from others. You can do this by listening to your team and developing your own professional network of advisers.

Remember, if you are having any struggles with the people side of the business, then the only person that you can really depend upon to save and fix your management career is yourself. After all, no one is coming to save you. Life doesn’t work that way!

If you struggle with leadership, no one is coming to save you. Take responsibility for your own leadership development. Click To Tweet
Written by Robert Tanner | Copyrighted Material | All Rights Reserved Worldwide

Robert Tanner, MBA

Welcome to my leadership blog. I'm the Founder & Principal Consultant of Business Consulting Solutions LLC, a certified practitioner of psychometric assessments, and a former Adjunct Professor of Management. As a leadership professional, I bring 20+ years of real world experience at all levels of management.

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