Let’s stop grappling with the question about which is more important, a Manager or a Leader. “Leading” and “managing” do not constitute a polarity. They are both important functions that complete each other. You need both. You need to master the greater continuum of management and leadership whether you are a manager by title or not. Like the human body, you cannot do without both the venal and arterial blood systems. You don’t choose one over the other as they are both vital parts of a greater whole. It’s the same with Management and Leadership. They are two vital processes and capabilities. They complete each other into a greater whole to include a full spectrum of competence. Here are some descriptives to highlight these natures. You can mentally insert a third line under every coupling below to read:

We Need Both.

We lead people.

We manage things.

Leadership is an art.

Management is a science.

Managers are promoters of stability.

Leaders are agents of change.

We Need Both.

Managers seek efficiency.

Leaders seek effectiveness.

A leader does the right things.

A manager does things right.

Leadership is formulating where you are going and why.

Management is executing a plan effectively according to an agreed-to roadmap.

Management accomplishes necessary goals through direction of resources.

Leadership illuminates pathways for others to follow.

We Need Both.

A manager helps people see themselves for what they are.

A leader helps people discover the greater person they can become.

A leader inspires collaboration and commitment.

A manager ensures compliance with policy and regulations.

We Need Both.

The leader’s focus is on people and opportunities.

The manager’s focus is on systems, structures and processes.

The leader has his eye on the horizon.

The manager has his eye on the bottom line.

A manager’s mindset is centered in the facts of today.

The leader’s mindset is centered in ideas that can create new facts tomorrow.

We Need Both.


© Aviv Shahar