Golden Visions and Associates | Coaching for Success
Thought for the Week
Your Success Thought for the Week of August 12, 2009
Are You A Manager or A Leader?
A conversation I often have with clients is about whether they are a leader or a manager.  A dramatic difference exists between the functions and results of these two important roles. 
Leaders have certain qualities that make people want to trust and follow them. Managers know their job well and get what needs to be done day-after-day.
Seth Godin explores this concept in his newest book, Tribes.
In a classic I Love Lucy episode, Lucy and Ethel are working on a candy assembly line.  As the candies come faster and faster, the two of them panic, stuffing truffles into their mouths to keep up with the onslaught.
They had a management problem.
Management is about manipulating resources to get a known job done.  Burger King hires managers.  They know exactly what they need to do to deliver and they are given resources to do it at low cost.
Managers manage a process they've seen before.
Leadership is about creating change that you believe in.
Managers have employees.
Leaders have followers. 
Managers make widgets.
 Leaders make change.
Ah, then leadership is about change, doing things better tomorrow than today.  People say they fear change, yet my experience is that on some level they also crave it. Why complain about something unless you want to change it?
Leadership is also about holding a vision of just how great things can get and pulling the right people together to orchestrate their vision. 
It's about flexibility to move with the waves of change occurring around them so nothing becomes stagnant. Dancing with change is an exciting aspect of leadership; managers may look at change as drudgery.
Leadership is about the perfect blend of passion and curiosity.  Great leaders have a passion for both those whom they lead and for where they are going. 
Leaders also have a continuous curiosity about slight adjustments that result in huge gains.
Managers, while very efficient in their roles, often lack the insight, passion, curiosity and vision that strong leaders possess
My question to you: are leading or managing your life.  How do the results you attain reflect this your role?  What, if anything, would you like to change?
We can't all be leaders all of the time.
Your key is to not simply fall into one of these categories,
but to intentionally create the most suitable role
for the results you desire.
Enjoy your discoveries and have a grand week!

To see more of my published articles, including ''Beyond 360 Degree Surveys,' go to:Golden Visions & Associates, Coaching for Executive and Leadership Success and then click on Writing and Wisdom across the top.

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Permission is granted to either reproduce copy or distribute "Your Success Thought for the Week" for August 12, 2009 as long as this copyright notice and full information about contacting the author is attached. The author is Ann Golden Eglé, GV&A, Golden Visions & Associates, Coaching for Success, 541.385.8887, PO Box 1696, Bend, Or. 97709.