Yes, yes, I know. Sometimes, a person in management is also a leader and vice versa. The truth is that the most efficient and productive managers have some leadership skills which they are able to weave into their management jobs. Some might call it the “IT” factor which makes some managers so well liked and their departments so productive.
The true definition of a manager is to manage a process so that the required task is completed in the way which has been designed to complete it. Oftentimes, there are other people, usually employees or subordinates, with whom the manager must interact with in order to complete the task at hand. In short, managers are paid to get things done usually on a schedule, which may be tight, and on a certain budget.
Typically, managers are granted a position of authority by their employer and subordinates do as the manager instructs. Research shows that most managers come from stable families with normal type lives. They tend to avoid conflict whenever possible and like the idea of running a happy ship.
Leaders, on the other hand, tend not to have subordinates, at least not while they are leading. Let’s be clear on this issue before we move forward. We all recognize that when a leader within an organization is also a manager, they will have subordinates and that’s because of their management position. When they move into a leadership role, they give up their authority which is connected to their management position. You see, here is one of the truths of leadership; to lead is to have followers and to follow is always a voluntary activity!
Leaders tend to be more charismatic and inspirational. They do not tell people what to do and while they are achievement focused, they are all about creating a team effect and enthusiasm in assisting towards the leader’s vision, which is usually also the group’s vision.
Personally, I believe that leaders tend to be far more confident in their personal beliefs than managers. This is manifested in their different perspectives on risk. Managers are risk-adverse whereas Leaders are risk-seeking. Quite simply, whenever you empower others, which are what leaders do, you run the risk of losing control of a particular situation or task.
In the real estate business, as sales agents, we really function in both roles on a daily basis. We constantly have to manage time and the tasks we are personally responsible for in generating our leads and business. It really doesn’t matter whether we are a single agent, on a team or have a team; we’ve still got to cover both roles in our daily operations.
I thought I’d include a few more topic areas below with the different roles or thought processes in the leaders vs. manager’s comparison.
While we’ve seen many lists compare the different attributes of managers and leaders over the years, we’ve never seen such an enormous shift in business and industry towards the desire for leadership in their operations as we are today. We are in an era where strong leaders can flourish. I love meeting and getting to know different leaders in our community and have seen hundreds of different leadership styles. The beauty is that there is no one correct model for being a powerful leader, it’s a mix and match of personality and traits along with some of the leadership qualities above that make the world go around.
Real estate companies are leaning more and more on powerful leaders who have the ability to sell a big vision of the company as well as help the individual agents to build, clarify and define their own huge visions of the future. Today’s business and leadership models are a one hundred percent win-win philosophy. It is more about people and relationships than ever before.
Here’s the bottom line; whether its family or business, learn to be a better leader and you’ll enhance your life and the lives of those around you.