Management vs. leadership: Is there a difference?

Management vs. leadership: Is there a difference? 657 404 C-Suite Network

There is an enormous amount of writing and commentary about management and leadership, which are often used interchangeably. The focus is usually on the practical aspects of management – including the authority bestowed on managers because of their position in an organization’s hierarchy – and the motivational aspects of leadership.

Both management and leadership can be harnessed to drive business success. Both are demanding attributes and can be defined in their broadest terms. Leadership is deciding what must happen and what direction to take. Management is getting it done and ensuring the organization is moving in the required direction.

Leaders are managers; managers need to be leaders

It’s easy to get hung up on the difference between management and leadership. If you are a CEO, you are by definition a leader. The organization will go where you take it for good or ill. Likewise, you are also a manager.

You have subordinates who report to you, and your role as manager is to oversee the structure that controls the flow of information and decisions. An effective CEO will utilize both skill sets in order to take the organization forward.

Working on the weaker of the 2 attributes – whether management or leadership – will carry you further. We are all much more comfortable concentrating on something we are good at and in business it’s no different. We are just as susceptible to devoting too much time to tasks that are in our comfort zone.

Don’t be afraid to take risks

If you are a good leader but not such a good manager, don’t brush that off as a mere detail. It’s a sign of good leadership to be able to identify your lack of interest in management as a risk to the business. Consider delegating the management of a…

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