Sunday, January 13, 2013

Management versus Leadership

They are not the same thing, but they are linked and complement each other.  

"Management" is the everyday essential skills to steering business success, such as planning, budgeting, staffing, and performance management (goals and evaluations) and coaching employees to success.

"Leadership" is having vision, finding opportunity, taking risk, creating empowerment and producing change.  Leadership is reflective of character. Leadership can be a choice.

Managers can execute vision and enable processes that produce results.  But without good leadership skills, it would be difficult to get people performing at their best.  Leaders have to manage in a way that is different than line managers, but still requires management skills.  Thus, the skills and competencies are linked and complement each other.  Individuals can be good at both self-management and leadership that demonstrates their ability to be successful AND influential.

management vs leadership
The response given in all leadership classes by participants that I teach, regardless if it's private, public, or military for what is most admired and expected of leadership is consistently the same:  integrity, vision, respect, trust, and empowerment.  The top four characteristics most admired in a leader based on research published in the latest book "The Leadership Challenge" are: honesty, forward looking, competence and inspiration.  

Developing leadership character can be more of a challenge than performing the functional skills of management. That character can be measured by having a higher degree of emotional intelligence ("EI" or "EQ") as a core leadership competency, which is quoted by many public, private and military leaders.  Leadership qualities can be developed by any individual.  Although organizational leaders must demonstrate it on a daily basis.

"No doubt emotional intelligence is more rare than book smarts. But my experience says it is actually more important in the making of a leader." - Jack Welch (GE Chairman)

"EQ is more important than IQ in almost every role and many times more important in leadership roles."  - Dr. Stephen Covery, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

"Leadership is a potent combination of strategy and character. But, if you must be without one, be without the strategy."  -General Norman Schwarzkopf

Articles written on either this web site or the blog combine the titles, since most people use the terms or define the skills interchangeably.  But they are different job functions and require different competencies.

- Ken Sergi


Click here for a PDF version of this article.

Note that images and graphics used in this blog are copyrighted and licensed for use to Ken Sergi.