To Manage Better, Put Yourself First

Common management convention holds that managers should put their employees first, but in her latest column for Inc., Carrie Kerpen of Likeable Media argues that you should instead put yourself first.

Kerpen took over as CEO of the firm she co-founded at the end of 2012. Her first move? Get healthy. "For me to be a better leader, I think I needed to be fit -- both mentally and physically," she wrote. "Heck, I think to be a better anything -- mom, wife, friend -- I needed to put myself first."

Kerpen set goals to eat better, lose weight and pursue personal interests. She made concrete efforts to leave work at a reasonable time to cook dinner for her family. By the end of Q1, she'd lost 20 percent of her body weight and, as she describes, "built the life that I wanted."

Her results translated into the workplace: "It became easier to meet my goals at work. In fact, I didn't just meet them. I crushed them. I became more focused, more present, and more confident. My employees, inspired by what I was doing, started to focus on their own personal goals. This makes them better at what they do, too."

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