Why Management Skills Are Necessary to Lead Effectively

In any organization, there are distinct roles and responsibilities each individual must execute. Leaders, though, are often the exception to the rule, as their obligations are quite expansive. Despite this reality, there is one surprising blend of characteristics many are unaware of.

A truly effective individual will showcase the best traits of leadership and management.

Managers vs. Leaders

There is actually a definite difference between the personas of a manager and leader.

Generally speaking, managers are the ones who deal with the technical aspect of work. Leaders are the ones who drive passion and vision within the organization.

leader-manager

While it may seem unconventional for a leader to also manage, there are unique benefits of combining these skillsets.

Best Practices for Combining Management and Leadership

Consider the benefits of this leadership style and the best ways to implement this tactic.

Have a Vision and Execute It

Leaders have vision. They are people who can conceptualize an idea. They also get others excited about that idea and create passion for their project.

However, in order to bring that idea to fruition, a leader will need to be able to carry a vision from the first spark of inspiration through to realization in order to achieve success. That’s where the management-side skill of effective execution comes in to play.

To realize an idea, leaders needs to be able to see the big picture, while also ensuring that they don’t miss the forest for the trees. A leader will need to take their vision, then develop and implement a strategic plan which can bring it from concept to concrete. These people can look at things objectively and realistically.  They can identify the steps they need to take which will ultimately lead to the goal of a project.

Direct and Delegate Responsibly

Leaders tend to be very strong personalities. They are take-charge people who value action and determination. However, the most effective leaders also understand very well that they can’t do everything on their own.

In order to be effective, it’s necessary to be able to direct and delegate responsibilities. It’s also important to not to let passion overcome sense and rationality. Leaders can choose the people they want surrounding them, but they should do so on the basis of merit, selecting people they can trust and who they know will do the best job possible.

It’s important that leaders not overload themselves—remember to offload responsibility to responsible people.

Take Calculated Risks

As the old saying goes, “nothing ventured, nothing gained.”

Leaders aren’t afraid to take risks. As a matter of fact, in many ways, the willingness to step up and take a risk is one of the key character traits which distinguishes a leader. However, no good leader wanders foolishly into a chance gamble.

Leadership demands a certain level of risk, but good leaders apply management techniques to minimize the risk to their organization and the people who depend upon them. They go into risky situations with a plan, as well as a contingency.

These individuals are willing to accept that if something goes wrong, the responsibility ultimately falls on their shoulders. Instead of being ready to spread the blame when failure happens, they do everything that they can to ensure success.

Managers Need to Lead, and Leaders Need to Manage

To be a leader, one must accept an active role in an organization. The best approach is to maintain a high-touch relationship with people in every department, while also empowering people to take charge and exemplify leadership in their daily roles.

It’s not feasible to have one person who drives the vision of an organization, then turns over the practical aspect to a team of managers, as this simply does not reflect the reality of today’s dynamic environment.

In order to be effective, those in charge should be able to lead from the front—that means breaking down the divide between leadership, management and the rest of the organization.

Monica Cardone