“You cannot manage men into battle. You manage things; you lead people.” – Grace Hopper, Admiral, US Navy
You may have noticed that some managers cannot lead. To lead is to organize and motivate others around a shared vision in order to accomplish a common goal. Strong leaders tend to adhere to a set of values, paint a vision, promote teamwork, and motivate action. Leaders tend to inspire trust, have a long-term perspective, and focus their efforts on people.
You may not have noticed that some leaders cannot manage. Management requires specific attention to detail. Strong managers excel at planning, organizing, and coordinating. Managers tend to rely on control, have a shorter view, and focus their efforts on systems and processes.
Leadership and management are both essential in business. Managers facilitate successful projects. Their day-to-day activities help to propel an organization through these successes.
Strong leaders are hard to find. Their value transcends a single accomplishment, as they tend to boost the performance of the entire organization within which they lead.
Are you looking to take your career to the next level? Looking to have a greater impact? Ask yourself a simple question – are you a leader, a manager, or both?
If you’re a leader, challenge yourself to play a managerial role where appropriate. You may gain credibility for your willingness to delve into the details and get more involved than normal.
If you’re a manager, stretch yourself to think long-term and focus more on people, values, and principles. This may help increase your influence and effectiveness. If you’re both, congratulations because your talents are few and far between.