self management

Self-management in the workplace: Why is it important and how can you improve it?

Self-management is an essential skill for employees across numerous industries. Without it, getting ahead in your career will be a challenge.

But what is it, and how can you improve it?

Seek and Indeed outline what self-management is and how to improve it.

Self-management skills

Several highly sought-after workplace skills are associated with self-management.

Here are 7 of the top self-management skills.


Accountability is all about taking responsibility for your actions. An accountable person will check their work to see if they can improve it.  They will take responsibility for any mistakes they make.

Goal setting

Goal setting involves clearly setting out what you want to achieve.  Setting goals at work is about determining what is most important.


Organisation involves arranging things in a neat and orderly manner. It also involves managing your time and workload effectively to maximise efficiency. Good organisational skills will help you meet deadlines at work. 


A self-motivated person takes the initiative to finish tasks. They don’t just do the bare minimum at work. They put in extra effort to complete tasks and rarely need motivation from supervisors.

Stress management

Stress management can involve diet, exercise and sleep. Getting on top of stress is critical, before it becomes a major issue.

Practicing stress management can help you remain calm at work.

Time management

Time management involves prioritising tasks, maintaining focus and reducing distractions. Those with good time management skills also delegate tasks when necessary.


Benefits of self-management

Having self-management skills provides numerous benefits in the workplace.


Employers value employees they don’t have to supervise constantly. The ability to juggle your workload, make informed decisions and achieve results by yourself is essential in almost any workplace.

Being independent at work demonstrates you are reliable and capable of handling complex tasks by yourself.

Problem solving abilities

Those with self-management skills can identify problems and solutions. They are good at using critical thinking to overcome problems. Those with problem solving skills also take a proactive approach.

Accountability and responsibility

People with self-management skills are more likely to take responsibility for their actions. They are also more likely to learn from their mistakes. These are both essential traits if you want to improve continuously.

How to improve self-management

There are many ways you can improve self-management at work:

Plan your day

At the end of each day, map out what the next day at work looks like. Assign time for specific tasks. Prioritise tasks in order of importance. Which are most important? Which can wait?

Use your calendar

Include in your calendar important meetings, events and deadlines. Ensure you include time for uninterrupted work, especially for those tasks that require intense concentration.

Set deadlines

Set reasonable timeframes for tasks and goals. Hold yourself accountable for these goals by putting in extra hours if necessary to get them done. 

Focus on one task at a time

Put all your energy and ability into completing one task at a time. Avoid multitasking.


If you have a meeting at work,  prepare for it the day before. Come up with questions to ask. Ensure you arrive at meetings on time or early.

Review strengths

What are you good at? What needs work? Playing to your strengths at work can maximise your chance of career success. 

Evaluate your progress

Occasionally, check in to see how you are progressing towards your goals.

Demonstrating self-management skills to potential employers

Given their importance, you must highlight your self-management skills in your resume. You can do this in the skills section of your resume, or when outlining your previous roles. When doing so, illustrate how your self-management has helped you achieve success in the past.

self management

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