Managing, leading -- what's the difference? Is there a difference? 

The answer is yes. Let's look at the fundamental yet critical differences.

Managers count value. They measure and then report on the meeting of, or the failure to meet, established expectations.

Leaders create value and act as catalysts. They brainstorm and collaborate with the team.

A manager's influence casts a narrow field, hovering only over those immediately under their direction.

On the other hand, a leader has broader impact across the company as their input will be sought by folks in various positions, departments, and at multiple levels of responsibility. 

Managers tend to be good at processes and numbers, focusing on efficiency and the short-term. They believe in rationality and control.

Great leaders excel at inspiring. They see the possibilities and rely on intuition. They believe in empowerment and take up a coach/challenge model that focuses on the long-term. 

Is one approach good and the other bad? Should one be shelved in favor of the other?

Ideally, the workplace needs both. Leaders who create a vision, articulate that concept to the team, spearhead enthusiasm, and ignite passion. That's when managers swoop in to make detailed plans, organize the schedule, the people, and the facility. Managers orchestrate the nitty gritty details (the how, when, and where) and then execute the well-oiled plan.

Both types of positions play an important role in the big picture of a company, and more importantly, in the company's longevity and success. While leaders are correctly seen as the individuals with the vision, innovative passion, and drive, managers are equally noted for their overall ability to get the job done.

Nearly every business endeavor needs both approaches. But what if leaders could adopt some of their managerially-gifted cohorts' traits? And what if managers could similarly incorporate leadership qualities into their day-to-day?

If you've ever seen a leader trying desperately to bring a big idea to fruition, or been told in a dismissive manner that, "It cannot be done, no way, no how" by the strictly managerial boss, then you can appreciate that a blended approach makes good business sense. Reality says the wisdom and practicality of a mash-up sounds pretty good.

Understanding the nuances of these two methods will impact any organization in a beneficial way. Knowing when to properly use each tactic will affect growth strategies, relationships between those in charge and the staff they guide, and the organization's overall health. And why not encourage the managers to hang out with the leadership team? Instruct them to swap stories -- the good, the bad, and the ugly -- and learn a bit from each other.

The key to company-wide success lies in embracing and celebrating each approach and fostering an effective working relationship amongst all parties,  utilizing the strength of each model to form a strong and properly balanced business plan.

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LeaderStat specializes in direct care staff, interim leadership, executive recruitment, travel nursing and consulting for healthcare organizations nationwide.