Self Leadership and the One Minute Manager : Increasing Effectiveness Through Situational Self Leadership, by Ken Blanchard, Susan Fowler, Lawrence Hawkins.

Hardcover: 176 pages; Publisher: William Morrow (May 24, 2005); ISBN: 0060799129.  Self Leadership and the One Minute Manager clearly and thoroughly reveals how power, freedom, and autonomy come from having the right mind-set and the skills needed to take personal responsibility for success.  “Ultimately, it's in your own best interest to accept responsibility for getting what you need to succeed.”  Self leadership can be achieved by practising three skills: challenge assumed constraints; celebrate your points of power; collaborate for success. Self leaders require different levels of direction and support as they consolidate their competence and commitment at each stage of their development.  We can empower ourselves by utilising the guidance and support of our peers. For such a small book & such a fast read this was a powerful book. It has life changing lessons that I plan to implement in my every day. I highly recommend this book to anyone who feels stuck in the life they are in, & let the lesson begin for your new journey.  Discover the magic of no excuses!    [The following is what I highlighted during my read of this excellent book -- I recommend it on my Top-ten List of Peace resources.  My purpose in providing them is to interest you, the reader, and hope that you will obtain and read the complete work.  To properly understand the highlights, you need to read the book to put them in the proper context.]



“I want people who are problem solvers and are willing to take the initiative.  I want people working for me who act like they own the place.”

… like empowered people …

… want honesty.

… want opportunities to constantly learn new skills.

… managers today, if they are to be effective, must think and act in different ways.

What’s the solution?  How can we help people move from a victim mind-set to flourishing as empowered problem solvers and decision makers?


1. Do You Believe in Magic?

… a victim of circumstance … a person who refuses to take responsibility for the situation he’s in.  It’s easier to blame everyone else around you, rather than taking responsibility for yourself.

… turn the problem upside down … so that you’re the one on top.

You are ready for self leadership when you take responsibility for your own success. 

The problem with being empowered is that when things go wrong, you have no excuses.  There’s no one to blame but yourself.

      Empowerment is something someone gives you.  Self leadership is what you do to make it work.

2. People Are Not Mind Readers

… pass on the learning to others.

Each of us has different things that motivate us.

… what motivates you today may change tomorrow.

Ultimately, it's in your own best interest to accept responsibility for getting what you need to succeed …

I need you to believe in the magic of self leadership.


3. Elephant Thinking

… no boss can know and provide the motivation that every individual needs.

… creating a work environment that is motivating to us.

An ‘Assumed Constraint’ is a belief you have, based on past experience, that limits your current and future experiences.

… greatest gift is to know your own mind.

The First Trick of a Self Leader: Challenge Assumed Constraints!

How could he open their minds?


4. Cycles of Power

… all the negative stereotypes we have about power today …

… I feel powerless …

Because I’m not in a position to get people to do what I want them to do…

Don’t buy into the assumed constraint that position power is the only power that works.

… knowing the system … is an important point of power.

… knowledge power.

… personal power … ability to give assurance to people …

… relationship power.

… cultivating those relationships and simply asking for leads.

You don’t have to agree with everything … just take it into account.

… task power.

… position power.

“The only way in which anyone can lead you is to restore to you the belief in your own guidance.”  Henry Miller

The 5 Points of Power: Position Power, Knowledge Power, Task Power, Relationship Power, Personal Power.

You need to know the nature of your strengths – your power – before you can lead yourself.

… cultivate them. …

“The sole advantage of power is ability to do more good.”  Balthazar Gracian

The Second Trick of Self Leadership: Celebrate Your Points of Power.


5. Diagnose Yourself

Commitment is measured by your motivation and confidence about the goal.

Competence – to increase your competence to achieve a goal, you need:  Direction from someone who will:

  1. set a clear goal
  2. generate an action plan
  3. show you how to do the goal or skill
  4. clarify roles
  5. provide timelines
  6. establish priorities
  7. monitor and evaluate your work and give feedback

Commitment – to build your commitment to achieve a goal, you need:  Support from someone who will:

  1. listen to you
  2. praise and encourage you
  3. facilitate your problem solving
  4. ask you for input
  5. provide rationale (remind you why you’re doing it)
  6. share information about their experiences relevant to the goal
  7. share information about the organization relevant to the goal

… what to ask for at each development level.

When your competence is low, you need direction; when your commitment is low, you need support.


6. Getting What You Need

The Needs Model:



7. Running Together

You asked for help and that takes strength.  It’s hard to turn someone down who knows what they need.

When Goals work out, it is usually because you instinctively take the initiative to be a self leader and get what you need to succeed.

There is magic in diagnosing your development level and getting the direction and support you need to achieve your goal.

The Third Trick of Self Leadership: Collaborate for Success!


8. No Excuses

… leverage your partnership and come up with a plan …

… get the feedback …

The two most powerful words to collaborate for success are: “I need”.

When you use the ‘I need’ phrase, you’re coming from a position of strength.  You’ve thought about what it’s going to take to succeed and are requesting a person’s help.  It’s amazing, but human beings love to feel needed.  They love to think they can help you.  ‘I need’ is very compelling.

Don’t get derailed by disillusionment!

A leader is anyone who can give you the support and direction you need to achieve your goal.


9. One Minute Magic  

Self leaders:
Challenge Assumed Constraints,
Celebrate Their Points of Power,
And Collaborate For Success.

Teach other the magic of self leadership.