Are You a Leader or a Manager? Part 5
Over the past few weeks, I’ve covered several areas that relate to being a leader, manager or both. Today I’m going to wrap up the series on leadership and management with a subject with many in our industry struggle…Ethics.
Ethics can be tricky to define on any level, and how they are addressed in a group will vary largely based off of who is running the group. Leaders care about people and what is going on within the group, resulting in the fact that they will care more about the individual rather than what rules have been put into place. If a leader sees fit, they may make exceptions or bend the rules so that members are able to work comfortably or be more productive.
Managers know that rules have been put into place to maintain equal treatment for every person that works for the company. They will not make any exceptions to the rules, as that leads to favoritism and issues down the road with other coworkers. Regardless of what a manager believes or thinks is right, they will follow company policy as it has been laid out because that is what is supposed to be done. While a leader follows their heart to make decisions, a manager uses their head and knows that too many emotions can obstruct the productivity of the group and keep them from succeeding in the long run.
In the end, it is very important to take the time to understand how a manager functions and how a leader functions. While they are very different in how they handle or address issues, it is not beneficial to lean too close to one side over another. As important as it is to think about people and make adjustments to plans, too many adjustments can lead to groups falling behind schedule. Leaders must also be aware of the consequences that will follow if they create a special rule for one individual while they are working in a group. While thinking of people is nice in theory, a person must know when to follow the rules and when to say “no” in order to keep the group productive and so that the leader does, indeed, remain the leader of the group.
So, once again, I ask you; are you a leader or manager? Let me hear your thoughts below.