Leadership & Management are Inseparable

Are you making the mistaking of treating leadership and management as synonyms? We talk a lot about leadership in Sword Tips because Exkalibur is all about helping you “pull the sword from the stone through understanding rather than strength” by focusing on the leadership principles and practices that distinguish high performance companies.

[pullquote]Leadership involves plumbing as well as poetry.[/pullquote]

But it’s easy to forget that the adage about leaders “doing the right things” … and managers “doing the things right” … is not meant to set those roles apart, rather to emphasize that they are two sides of the same coin, essential roles that must be performed by a successful leader. How many times have we seen leaders who are completely surprised by the disappointing outcomes they’re not managing?

Henry Mintzberg, a Professor of Management Studies at McGill Univesity, reminds us in a Business Week article that while leadership and management are very different responsibilities, neither is achievable without the other. He laments that leadership education these days treats management as a stepchild and argues that “we’re overled and undermanaged”.

His recounting of a quotation from Stanford University emeritus professor James G. March, summarizes it well: “Leadership involves plumbing as well as poetry.”

Have you abandoned sound management principles in an effort to be defined as a leader? Are you offended if you’re called a manager?

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