Thursday, January 5, 2012

Management Vs. Leadership

There is an ever ending debate and discussion on Management and leadership.
This recently surfaced in a forum called Key Talent @ HP and I was part of it. Don't ask me if I'm key to HP or if I have the talent ;). I, in fact asked the same question myself to the anchor.

Never the less, that is not the topic of discussion now. I thought of penning down my thoughts on these two and what differentiates a Leader from a Manager. Of course both these roles are good, equally important, and I mean no disrespect to management.

- Raj

Here we go....

Of course, the simple meaning could be Leaders lead and Managers manage. But the question always lingers on what more do the leaders bring in. How do they ensure the organization sees the difference. Here are my simple and short thoughts.

Managers Manage the battle; Leaders Lead the war.
Managers Plan; Leaders Stratergize.
Managers Debate; Leaders Decide.
Managers Delegate; Leaders Own.
Managers are for a Team no matter the size of it; Leaders are for an organization and no matter the size of it.
Managers enforce Processes; Leaders define Policies.
Managers Train; Leaders Mentor.
Managers Challenge; Leaders Inspire.
Managers Solve Problems they live with; Leaders Choose what Problems they live with.

Managers Manage Change; Leaders are the Change.

While the debate can invariably go on for ever, the fact is leaders inspire change in the minds and lives of their team. Leaders make people believe in the cause and galvanize them to march towards the cause, no matter how grave or great that could be!

As they say, leaders are not made; they are born. It has to come from within.
One cannot be a leader because he/she was appointed. He/She should have inherent capabilities of decision making and owning them immaterial of their results! Most importantly, he/she should have ownership towards the followers and understand that each and everyone is unique and has something to offer towards the cause.

Well, in today's corporate world, these may be hard to exhibit and sometimes ones who have these qualities may even be ridiculed, but only by people above them and if you are a leader you will not be judged by people above you but by people who follow you.

Leadership is all about coaching, mentoring, guiding, inspiring, enabling and empowering the next level people and after which I sit in the grand stand enjoying the view of them succeeding! And the grand stand view would simply be very amazing while it is not so easy to get into that!

Be the Leader and be the Change!

- Raj


Anand V said...

Just to add a line here:
Managers are made, Leaders are born

Karthik said...

I see this as a more simplified version of understanding what a leader is expected to do....nice write-up Raj..