How to Effectively Lead
University of Phoenix
To lead is a function of management; leadership requires more skills than just managing. Often managers execute their duties flawlessly and still fail to lead, and yet many leaders in the workplace do not hold the title of manager. The differentiation between manager and leader is defined and discussed in detail in the text below.
How to Effectively Lead
Management is defined as the process of working with resources, including people, to obtain a goal. There are four, largely autonomous, functions that define management. Leadership is more than just a function and requires several traits that may or may not be found in a given manager. Leadership requires the collaboration of resources and management functions coupled with strategic vision to effectively lead. Leadership
Leadership is demanded in business today. Successful businesses recognize complementary skills in management and leadership are required and without effective leadership, it cannot reach its goals or vision. Simply defined, “leadership is the ability to guide, direct, and influence people” (Fiedeldey-Van Dijk, 2007, p2). Effective leadership may be comprised of several commonly accepted traits that include visionary, inspirational, self-sacrifice, integrity, decisive, and performance oriented (House, 2004, p36). These traits when demonstrated are typically understood and accepted across most cultural norms. A steel plant with multi-cultural diversity among its workers will see certain types of leadership styles as acceptable such as autonomous, as normal and expected, while others in the workforce may perceive as weak or arrogant. Leaders create followers that willingly follow, whereas managers create followers out of obligation, rules, and or out of subordinate relationships (Hock, 2000). The point here is that these commonly accepted traits transcends across cultural diversity in the workplace and therefore, are more likely to induce followers with acceptable behaviors and outcomes that support the corporate mission, vision, and goals. Managing a group of people can be done without leadership. In such a case, the employees are probably extremely self-motivated. However, a lack of leadership is more likely to reduce performance and can prevent the corporate mission and goals from success. Leadership defines the future and aligns employees with the vision, and inspires people to reach that vision (Fiedeldey-Van Dijk, 2007, p3). Effective leaders have an ability to listen with empathy and respond appropriately. They are also aware of how they are perceived and the impact they have on people. Leaders spend time with the employee, converse, and get acquainted in an attempt to build camaraderie and relationships as well as reveal themselves as persons with human qualities (Hofman, 2008, p11). Managing of Self
In discussing leadership, inevitably self-management or self-awareness comes up as the core skill of highest importance. Leaders know themselves, through personal values, beliefs, and leadership behavior (Hofman, 2008, p5). Leaders tend to allow their employees to see who they truly are. Leaders are less concerned about titles and perceived manager expectations than they are with allowing his or her employees to see the real person behind the name and title. They pursue a journey of self-discovery and a desire to develop and strengthen internally. This skill when developed begins to support an environment where constructive visionary leadership can take place. Once developed and continually strengthened, inspirational leadership begins to emerge. Employee involvement is one way to inspire others through feedback and questions. This leaves room for the employees to get involved instead of merely following pre-established rules.
This tends to encourage creativity, innovations, and new possibilities that support a competitive advantage for...
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