Leadership vs Management - What's the Distinction?

“What’s the difference between a leader and a manager?”

Well-worn as that question may be, it remains worth asking because times change, and leaders succeed when their words, decisions, and actions address prevailing conditions. We all suspect, for example, that solving today’s extraordinary problems will take someone other than the all-business manager who kept us on the tracks – and then ran us off the tracks – over the past few years.

According to some research carried out by Achieve Global, one of the largest global training company’s, today's leaders are tasked on a variety of different levels to cope with today’s business climate - this ranges from the largest corporate giants, to small start ups.

The key findings related to some common leadership behaviours across all areas of business surveyed

  • Cost pressures

  • Competitors

  • Improving customer satisfaction

  • Technology challenges

  • Driving sales growth

  • Employee productivity

  • Product/service innovation

As a result of these initial findings, 6 zones were identified around behaviours that today's leaders need to develop:

Zone 1 – Reflection

Leaders assess their motives, beliefs, attitudes, and actions asking, “how can I make sure my limitations don’t lead me to make poor decisions?”

To succeed in this zone, leaders:

  • Take responsibility for their own mistakes.

  • Seek the knowledge required to make sense of the big picture.

  • Examine what role they play in the challenges they face.

  • Treat failure as a chance to learn and grow.

  • Reflect often on their performance as a leader.

  • Give serious consideration to opinions that differ from their own.

  • Speak frankly with others to learn from them and build trust.

Zone 2 – Society