Examining leadership and management
Management is all about identifying and describing the actions that managers can undertake to achieve better performance and a competitive advantage for their organization. Formulating a strategic plan is long and tedious and involves much management time and resources. However, without a comprehensive analysis of a business’s competitive position vis-à-vis its corporate environment, the company puts itself in a weakened position that may threaten its very existence. The strategic management team of any sustainable company must have a good understanding of the organisation’s environment and maximise its strengths to exploit the external opportunities and minimise potential threats.
On the other hand, leadership acts as the key player for the company’s performance. Leadership refers to the ability to inspire a visionary direction towards the fulfilment of organisational goals. In simple words, leadership is getting the work done by the respective worker. Leaders mainly motivate others in the company to do their respective jobs that contribute to achieving its goals. Previously it was thought that leadership is a virtue that can only be achieved by those born with exceptional qualities. However, recent studies have shown that a person can develop outstanding leadership competencies through proper training and exposure. Leadership seems to be learned rather than taught. Any organization desiring to cultivate leaders must provide the right amount of instruction in the right environment.
Successfully building a leader is a challenging endeavour. Attempting to develop multiple leaders in concert is exponentially more difficult. When an organization determines that it needs leaders and not managers, it consciously decides to embark on radical change. Leaders are change agents, and they do not allow organizations to remain stagnant. By agreeing to train and develop leaders, the organization is pledging to do away with the old ways and bring in the new.
The choice to develop leaders over managers must be considered out carefully. Not every organization should embark upon creating leaders. In some cases, developing competent managers should be the goal. A competent manager can increase the value of an organization exponentially without embarking on radical change. Sometimes creating leaders opposes the notion of radical egalitarianism by selecting individuals with above-average work ethic and IQ and promoting them to places of both competence and power. Managers often have a prescribed way of handling day-to-day activities and challenges, whereas leaders must quickly process complex situations and make decisions without comprehensive plans to follow.
Even though it sounds easy to get the work done by others practically, it is not that easy as individuals are motivated by different factors that are identical in nature. Not all employees are motivated in the same way, so it is a challenge to ensure the maximum effort from the workers’ side.
Leaders motivate others to ensure they deploy maximum effort for the fulfilment company’s objectives. From this point of view, a leader seems to affect strategic management in a very intense way. Leaders closely monitor all the steps associated with the strategic direction and consult with other respective parties to ensure the effective implementation of the strategic management process.
Therefore, there is a subtle difference between management and leadership. Whereas leadership deals with doing the right thing, management is concerned with doing things in the right way. Leadership is concerned with determining which decision would serve the company’s objectives best, and after deciding all these related issues, management is ordered to implement the decision. At this stage, management will choose the best possible way to do the task.
From another point of view, management is responsible for developing the processes and structures of the organization. While at the same time, leadership is concerned with the vision and values of the organization. Leadership is always concerned with the big issues like sustainability, profitability, and long-term well-being of the company and, in this way, affects the management’s performance to ensure the best possible performance for the company.
Leadership works to ensure the projected achievement and implementation of the strategic plan and, in a way, gives the management a guideline to move efficiently. Hence, leadership is regarded as the bridge between strategic management and the targeted objectives because leadership gets the strategic management to achieve the goal. Management arranges the people and resources to perform the task, and leadership helps management design a framework for achieving the goal with the assigned resources.
The other important fact about leadership and management is that management and leadership go hand in hand. Without efficient management, leadership may serve the company in the short term, but overall, efficient management is a must for the company’s well-being.
From the above discussion, it has been made known that leadership sets a direction for any given action. At the same time, management offers the resources for the plans and successfully implements the goals, so no one alone is sufficient for the efficient operation of the company. A balanced commitment from both parties is a good match for the betterment of the company.