Leadership or Management. Which is more Important?

Share on linkedin
Share on facebook
Share on reddit
Share on pinterest

Today, I received an email from someone who was upset saying “all you need to run an organization effectively is management and not leadership.” Well, this may work if your team is comprised of robots and if you don’t care about leaving a legacy. As soon as you hand in your resignation or retirement letter and step outside those organization doors, you will be forgotten.

Management is the set of processes that keep an organization functioning. Leadership on the other hand requires the ability to influence a group toward the achievement of goals. Management focuses on the bottom line. A leader is interested in followers—the people who will deliver the process that leads to the bottom line.

Managers excel in figuring out the best way to control their team to complete tasks. Leaders inspire people to do the tasks. Managers rely on control; leaders rely on trust. Leaders command respect. Managers demand it. You have to be able to win the hearts and minds of your employees if you want buy-in and commitment. Management alone will cause people to come in 8:00am and leave at 4:00pm on the dot.

There are days when I really need my team to give the extra effort whether that meant coming in a little earlier or working late and they always supported me. What I was asking is outside of their job description and yet they willingly complied. This takes leadership. Leadership is a team game, and true leaders make great team players because of their ability to understand and connect with people around them.

Being a manager is a job. Managers implement the practices of the organization. Being a leader is a role. Leaders guide and inspire. Their fulfilment comes in bringing about positive change. A good leader puts the interest of their followers before their own and measure success by whether their followers are better off.

Leaders help organizations and people to grow, while a manager’s greatest accomplishment comes from making work processes more effective. Leadership breeds loyalty, dedication, and accountability. Leaders inspire, motivate, and influence their teams and assist them in reaching their goals and achieving their highest possible performance.

“Leadership is an art of accomplishing more than the science of management says is possible.” ~Colin Powell

Leaders build people through training, coaching, mentoring, and rewarding. They recognize that everyone is motivated differently. Managers, on the other hand, believe people will be motivated if you pay them enough. Leaders understand that pay is a satisfier but not the only motivator.

In this time of economic uncertainty, technological advancement coupled with the increasingly complex and volatile business environment, the need to demonstrate BOTH leadership and management in perfect situational correlations has never been more critical for success.

So which is more important? Both are important but naturally, leadership is ahead of management. A well-balanced organization has leadership at its base.

In building our businesses, we need to harness our passion and vision with disciplined processes. For an organization to achieve strong results, both leadership and management need to be present. With good management and poor leadership the team will lack the motivation to pursue goals. Additionally, without efficient management skills the direction set by a leader risks being unsustainable.

How an organization strikes balance between management and leadership depends on the type of business, the people, and the environment in which it operates.

0 replies on “Leadership or Management. Which is more Important?”

Related Post