Every manager wants to believe they are a leader.
“It’s hard to find a resume stating, ‘I was only a manager, never a leader,’” says George Makrauer, a resident of The Villages and president of the COMAD GROUP management consulting firm.
Truth is, most bosses are better managers than leaders. Anyone who has punched a time clock knows that managerial acumen and leadership skills aren’t synonymous.
“The difference between the two is perceived and evidenced differently,” Makrauer said. “The ‘perception’ of leadership rests in the mind of the manager whose style is to tell others what to do; the ‘evidence’ of leadership lives in the behaviors of the business associates –subordinates, peers and superiors – who enthusiastically follow the lead of the business professional who knows, appreciates and supports the needs of those others to succeed in their job duties and personal goals.”
It’s a good definition. But hardly the only description. Here’s how some of the most successful managers and leaders in Lake and Sumter counties define leadership and management:
“A manager does just that, manages workflow, projects and sometimes people, and takes charge of the daily needs by delegating the workflow. It is my opinion that every manager should strive to become a great leader. From this, great teamwork is achieved. A leader is someone who takes charge of the needs in their realm of responsibility with conviction, and others in the organization support it. You cannot be considered a ‘leader’ if no one will ‘follow’ you.”
— Susan Noell,
Bushnell city manager
“A manager is someone who juggles tasks and people, but a leader is someone who inspires and motivates people to successfully complete tasks. In order to lead, you must first be willing to follow.”
— Lori Humphrey, project manager,
Lake County Shared Services Network
“A leader provides the vision and motivates people to work to obtain that vision. A manager utilizes processes, systems and resources to achieve the goals that lead to accomplishing the mission and vision of the organization.”
— Bradley Arnold,
Sumter County administrator
“Managers administer, leaders innovate; managers control, leaders inspire trust; managers are the team players, leaders are their own person; managers do things right, leaders do the right thing and so on. I just never could discern where one left off and the other began … It eventually dawned on me that there really was no dichotomy between leadership and management. The comparison was not an either/or scenario, but instead of the notion that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Like most things in life, it really was more of a question of balance. The opportunity to make a difference falls between the two phrases – in our personal lives, in developing our management skills, and to lead in building better communities.”
– Ray San Fratello, president,
South Lake Chamber of Commerce
“A great leader inspires followers to become as motivated through their own passion toward achieving goals. A great manager best utilizes the skills of their team towards accomplishing tasks with efficiency and positive results. Though the two roles overlap more often than not, there are key differences. Leaders are more visionary, while managers are more task oriented.”
— Claudia Labbé, public relations chair,
Humane Society/SPCA of Sumter County, Inc.
“First, a manager should be a leader. Some try to lead by example, some try to earn respect from others and some lead by controlling. My office uses a different form of leadership that has made me extremely blessed. Our office has one of the best business managers in the country who has ran some top Fortune 500 companies. He had great manager skills, but our office was still lacking some leadership. It wasn’t ‘til I brought on a pastor to work with me and become my office manager. He uses Christ-like leadership. He leads by example and we are constantly training our staff. Each morning we start the day off with a huddle and a prayer.”
— John Theeck, D.C.
“A manager tends to believe in a vertical chain of command, while a leader knows the best way of leading is horizontally, where the leader creates a climate that stimulates creative ideas and open discussion. The best leader is the one who brings out the best in his staff.”
— Mark Newhouse,
author and former school teacher