“Management is about coping with complexity. Leadership, by contrast, is about coping with change.” John Kotter
Companies manage complexity by first planning and budgeting, then organizing and staffing, and then controlling and problem solving.
Companies lead by setting a direction, aligning people, and motivating and inspiring.
Kotter says that leadership is really creating a vision of something that could be mundane, but truly serves the needs of its customers and clients. Aligning people truly empowers them to step into their role and contribute in a way that moves the organization forward. Successfully motivating ensures that employees will have the energy to overcome obstacles. It is motivating through satisfying basic human needs of achievement, belonging, recognition, self-esteem, control over one’s life and an ability to live up to one’s ideals.
Management on the other hand is truly taking complex issues and making them more effective, efficient, and productive.
I agree with Kotter that leadership is more visionary and inspiring to bring people along with the strategic plan they have. It takes the ability to take risks, serve clients in a way in which they are not currently served. It is inspiring and open minded and willing to motivate others by working on those aspects that engage employees to want to work through obstacles and not just require it of them. It takes courage to be a leader. It takes authenticity and it takes inspiration - in your own vision and in encouraging others to work towards that vision as well.
Are you a leader or a manager? If you want to be a leader what is your vision to get there? How can you begin to take the steps to become a leader and how can you inspire others to follow your lead?
Leadership Qualities: Commitment
“Commitment separates doers from dreamers.” John Maxwell
Are you someone who has had a vision or thought, but never followed through on it? Are you someone who has taken some steps towards your vision, but stops when the going gets tough? Or are you someone who perseveres and commits to a vision and sees it through even in the toughest of circumstances?
A true leader is one who commits 100% to his vision and his values knowing that conviction is the only thing that will inspire his own potential and that of others who follow him.
John Maxwell, in “The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader” says that the three traits below are the ones which are part of committed leader:
-Commitment starts with heart - having a passion and true love for whatever you want to achieve. If you have true heart it will take you through the hard times.
-Commitment is tested by actions - It is one thing to say you have a vision, it is another to put in the effort day to day when you may not be seeing the results yet.
-Commitment opens the door to achievement - it is only when you keep getting up after being knocked down that you can truly reach your goal and make a difference.
I believe that commitment is such an important cornerstone for a leader. It truly distinguishes the people who truly are devoted to what it is that they do and those who are dabblers. Dabblers keep jumping from thing to another and never go deep in anything. True leaders go deep in one or two things and make an incredible difference there. Commitment is that willingness to go deep in what it is that you are passionate about.
What are you willing to commit to? Are you taking the necessary actions to commit to those goals? Are you getting up even if you are knocked down in order to achieve true leadership?
“You have got to love your people more than your position.” - John Maxwell
According to John Maxwell in “The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader” servanthood is an attitude - one of putting other people first and wanting to serve others more than yourself.
John Maxwell says there are a few key components of servanthood:
-Putting others ahead of your own agenda - this means truly understanding other people’s needs and accepting their desires as important.
-Possessing the confidence to serve - we treat others as we treat ourselves. If you are secure in yourself then we can treat others with respect and serve them with love.
-Initiates service to others - great leaders see a need and serve without anyone seeing it or without expecting anything in return.
-Is not position-conscious - true servant leaders focus on being human and helping another person.
-Serves out of love - the extent of your influence depends on the depth of a your concern for others.
The best leaders I have worked with and been around are ones who truly are looking out for your best interest, who want to serve you in your own growth and want you to grow into your greatest potential. That is true servanthood where they want what is best for you and can truly understand your desires.
Are you a servant leader? What acts of kindness and service can you add in to your organization and/or to your life? What action can you begin taking today to serve?
Monica Thakrar has over 18 years experience in business focused mainly on strategy, change management, leadership development, training and coaching resulting in successful implementations of large scale transformation programs.