Do you lead or do you manage? This is a question that anyone who is at the helm of a company or organization needs to ask his or herself. While the terms may seem interchangeable, they certainly aren’t. Someone charged with the running of an organization could be a combination of the two but keep in mind they are separate management styles.
The way in which you motivate your staff determines whether you are a leader or a manager as the techniques vary. The techniques used to lead and motivate also determine an individuals’ leading or management style.
How do you think of your employees? As followers or subordinates? A leader has followers while a manager has subordinates. While an individual may have the title of Manager, he or she can still be a leader and will have the title Manage bestowed simply by seniority. Regardless of titles, a leader can still have followers in their organization as these followers would be with them regardless of that individual’s place within the organization.
When working with subordinates, these people have no choice but to follow you – their livelihood likely depends on it. They don’t follow you willingly, they are required to because of the hierarchy in the firm.
Because of the nature of authority in a corporation, employees – subordinates – perform the tasks the manager requests of them. Because they do the manager’s bidding, however, doesn’t mean they robotically follow mandates. In some cases though, a manager might have to use a transactional style of management to get the work done – in other words he or she may need to offer an incentive for the subordinate’s completion of the task.
If you’re a leader you’d be more likely to operate in a transformational style of motivating employees. These leaders work with the team and set goals and motivate those on the team to work to achieve that. Leaders are typically charismatic and they can easily persuade team members that having achieved the goal is not only desirable but that they’ll feel a sense of accomplishment for having done so.
When you walk into the office are you focused on the people with whom you work or are you focused solely the need to perform the tasks at hand? In many instances, managers have a set number of hours to perform a specific number of tasks. As such, they are focused on getting the subordinates to complete the necessary steps. Leaders don’t have to be friends with everyone they work with but they can certainly inspire them to meet their goals. Leaders and managers have the same tasks to complete in the same amount of time, but they each perform their duties in vastly different manners.
Do you lead or manage? Does your style work for you or do you feel you need to cultivate a different style?