Leadership vs Management Page 7Authors: Byron and Catherine Pulsifer, ©2016
Think about "boss", "a supervisor", or "a manager". Automatically you probably think of the top person, the one who makes all the decisions, or the one who tells you what and how to do your job. This is the person, no matter their particular title, who you never question or voice your opinion to.
Now, what about "coach"? Do you think of a person who helps you, who demands the best of you, who teaches you, who encourages you, who motivates and inspires you to become all you can be as a boss, a supervisor or as a coach? If your answer to the preceding question was as a "coach", you'd be correct.
Which of the above two paragraphs best describes your style?
If you have been in a manager's role for many years, you may have been taught to direct employees rather than teach, or to tell rather than explain, or to be the one with all the answers rather than the one who utilizes the expertise of your employees. You may also be the kind of manager that your employees would rather keep away at arm's length rather than a person who is known as a caring and empathetic human being; a person who is willing to listen rather than one who simply commands.
Let me phrase the question another way. Who you would like to work for? Is it the person who makes all the decisions, or tells you what to do and how to do it? Or, would you prefer to work for someone who demands the best, someone who teaches or mentors, and encourages you? No matter where you are within the organizational structure be that supervisor, team leader, manager, director, reginal manager, vice-president, this question applies to you. Now, thinking about yourself, and thinking about whom you would like to work for should help you decide what type of manager or coach you would like to be.
There is a real need for you to decide what a coach means to you. The reason you should strongly consider this is that you may one day be promoted to a supervisor, manager or executive.
One thing is for sure. You might have all the knowledge you need but unless you have very strong people skills, you will have a very tough time requesting solid work and output from other people. The higher you go in an organization, the stronger your people skills need to be. Now is the time to start practicing what you would like your own boss to demonstrate. You cannot wait until you are in a position of leadership - the task is to have these skills developed now so that you can easily demonstrate by way of example how and why you have acquired these skills.
Over the years, I have witnessed some very skilled managers and executives who had a tremendously strong background and a fabulous knowledge base but who failed miserably in leadership positions because they had no people skills whatsoever. Their ideas of leading were to bark orders, or to devalue their immediate staff members, or to provide absolutely no assistance in developing their people. Each one of these types of leaders was only a leader because of their stated title not because they demonstrated leadership qualities.
Now, for those who may be wondering how to go about becoming a leader that people will not only gladly work for but one who also has the ability to motivate staff to excel or expand their knowledge. There are several ways to learn these skills.
One of the first things One of the first things that you can do, all on your own, is to start conducting research about what a leader is and isn't. This search can start with scouring the Internet for leadership articles, books and web sites that have many different points of view but point to some very basic and common themes.
Another thing you can do is to visit your local library and ask the librarian to help you locate books and magazines on leadership and management. What you are specifically looking for are articles that describe leadership styles and actual case examples of this leadership practice in actual companies or workplaces. It is valuable for your professional growth to discover books, articles or magazine articles that describe in detail a case study or example of differing leadership styles and the results of that particular style. This is very important for two reasons.
First of all, to learn about a leadership only in theory does little to help you see how these styles are actually implemented. Secondly, it is important to understand some of the issues that were faced by adopting different styles of leadership and to see how these various issues were handled. The real meat of this exploration is to learn what worked, what didn't work, and the final results.
For example, if there were issues discovered or failings in utilizing a certain leadership style, what were the leadership strategies employed to alleviate the issue or issues?
You also want to find out what didn't work, and why it didn't work. If it didn't work, what happened? Was the issue finally resolved and how it was resolved.
Here is the interesting part of examining leadership case studies. The variable that is always an unknown is the personalities, strengths and weaknesses of the employee or employees as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the leaders. What I mean is this: every situation, and every person, and every leader is different. There is no way of categorically indicating that by adopting a certain strategy that you've read about in a case study will give you the same results. The issue here is that no matter how competent your leadership skills are, there will always be variations in the degree to which you are successful in meeting or addressing the work place issue.
However, the more you immerse yourself in reading books that talk about different successful leaders and managers or owners of companies who excelled at developing staff members or mentoring their skills, the more examples you will be able to draw upon to help you in your leadership challenges. Remember this as well: you need to continuously develop your leadership skills as well.
You can also find a growing selection of books and articles on coaching which is a more up to date term for a leader who spends more time helping staff members grow in personal and professional ways rather than just delegating, or instructing employees what to do.
In order to summarize some of the critical aspects of becoming a valued added employee, and the highlights of what it takes to advance in today's workplace environment, Catherine wrote "Wings For Work". Start moving forward and leave yesterday behind. Use "Wings For Work" as your personal catalyst to begin a new and more rewarding journey.
Wings for Work
Author: Catherine Pulsifer
Have you ever wondered why other people get ahead at work, or why they receive greater pay increases or larger bonuses?
Why are some people successful even when the odds are stacked against them?
Why are some people always upbeat and happy even when facing challenges?
In this book learn how to develop and use these same key qualities that can make your job and life much more happy and successful! You can obtain this book from Amazon, Wings for Work, and start moving forward.
My Coach vs. My Former Manager
Authors: Byron and Catherine Pulsifer, ©2004
My coach taught me initiative, my former manager told me what to do.
My coach has enthusiasm, my former manager indifference.
My coach inspires me, my former manager demotivated me.
My coach is dependable, my former manager was unpredictable.
My coach empowers me, my former manager controlled me.
My coach focuses on why, my former manager focused on how.
My coach shows me the big picture; my former manager kept knowledge to themselves.
My coach says, "how can I help you?", my former manager said, "this is what you will do".
My coach is like a teacher; my former manager was like a drill sergeant.
My coach invites change, my former manager demanded status quo.
My coach teaches, my former manager ordered.
My coach is solution oriented, my former manager focused on the problem.
My coach gives credit to the team; my former manager took all the credit.
My coach is open to new ideas, my former manager's idea was, "their way or the highway".
My coach encourages open discussion; my former manager encouraged "do as I say, not as I do."
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