Are you Managing or Leading?

I am passionate about the four key elements that I feel are critical to running a successful company. These elements are Leadership, Process, Metrics and Organized Financials. The cornerstone of this four-step methodology is Leadership. Do not use confuse this with the term “management” or “managing”.

Leadership involves inspiring others with a clear vision of how things can be done better. Those who manage tend to implement someone else’s vision or what they believe is the “corporate” vision and normally slow things down by limiting what their part of the organization can do to just what has been asked or expected – to play it safe and no more.

Leaders work between the lines and interact with their organization to test their vision and assumptions by getting feedback from those who actually work in the operations they are responsible for. Taking the time to understand what is holding people back from higher levels of job satisfaction and job performance. Leaders try to find out how the employee can be unleashed to higher levels of performance than they thought possible and then get out of the way. This is true for individual contributors and those in intermediate supervision positions as well.

Too often artificial ceilings trap employee performance because of misunderstandings, poor vision implementation and access to the facts that drive the business. The Leader looks for this condition and gets to the bottom of the problem. Few people intentionally perform poorly when provided with reasonable training, equipment, work environment and motivation.

The leader is conscious of the whole picture and looks beyond the traditional boundaries to see that his business (or department) is successful and that their employees are excited about what they are doing and are onboard with the direction of the business.

Have you trapped yourself into a “manager” mindset? Are you excited about your business? Are you transferring that excitement to others in your business? Can you recognize that excitement in those who produce your products or deliver your services.

Take a fresh look at your business, take a new look at your business plan (even better – develop one), identify what is necessary to energize not just your key people but all employees. Become a facilitator and less a controller. Celebrate the independent accomplishments of employees and supervision when they do well and lift the performance of the team(s).

Be a leader!

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