What is the difference between a manager and a leader?
Is there even a difference?
Yes, there is! It doesn't matter if you are running a business, managing a team, or teaching a class, leadership skills are important. Some people seem to be born knowing what to do to inspire and lead people, and some don’t … but here’s the good news for those who don’t – you can acquire these skills too!
But first thing’s first. Do you know if you are a manager or a leader?
Perhaps this quick 10-question quiz can help shed some light:
1. Are you more work or people focused?
A. Work focused
B. People focused
2. Do you prefer to be stable in your job or do you navigate change well?
3. Are you reactive or proactive to issues faced by your stakeholders?
4. Do you normally micromanage your team or do you trust them to meet their goals?
B. Trust people
5. What are you more focused on – the task at hand or executing a vision?
A. Task focused
B. Vision focused
6. Do you normally enforce the culture in your team, or would you rather shape it together with your team?
A. Enforce culture
B. Shape culture
7. Does conflict bother you or do you find it very useful?
A. Don’t like conflict
B. Conflict can be useful
8. No matter whose fault it is, would you normally blame others or take the blame (take responsibility for it)?
A. Blame others
B. Take the blame
9. Do you normally take credit if things go well or give credit where credit is due?
A. Take credit
B. Give credit
10. Do you normally minimise risks or take risks?
A. Minimise risks
B. Take risks
Explore what kind of leader you are to understand which approach works best for you and your team.
Here are 5 simple tips to be a better manager or a leader.
1. Listen and Communicate Effectively
Communication is the number 1 quality in any relationship. You must be able to listen (not hear!) to what is being said, take it in to understand what was said and then communicate effectively. Expressing your vision and sincere care and concern for your team will lead them to feel inspired and motivated to contribute.
2. Positive Inspiration
Having an upbeat, optimistic, and positive attitude serves as a source of inspiration for your team. Even when things look bleak and your team starts to feel disheartened, try to stay as positive as possible. This does not mean viewing things through rose-coloured glasses, but it simply means maintaining a sense of optimism and hope in the face of challenges. Yes, it can be a challenge, more so in the current situation, but this is when your team will look to you most for hope and courage.
3. Teamwork makes the dream work
"Team" stands for Together Everyone Achieves More! See yourself as part of the team, a leader who is willing to roll up your sleeves and do what it takes to support, help, guide, and coach. This will prove to your team that you can work side by side with them when the need arises, as you are invested in their success as well.
4. Be quick to praise
Praising your team for a job well done is so important and it should be done openly. This is also a point of motivation for your team, and they will most likely produce excellent work all the time. Bear in mind, if you need to give feedback that's focused on development and growth, please do that privately and with lots of positive tones.
5. I’m sorry, it was my mistake
It takes a strong and confident leader to say they are sorry and that they were wrong. Please do not take it as a sign of weakness, and in fact, the more honest and open you are, the more people will respect you as a leader. Mistakes are made by everyone! All we need to do is, apologise, learn from it, and move on.
Want to know more about LeapEd Academy and the different trainings we offer? Check us out here - LeapEd Academy Programmes.