Finding a great leader is vital for setting your business on the right track. They’ll define better goals, motivate their teams, solve problems effectively, and more. But leadership is a term often mistaken as another word for management.
In this article, we’ll help you understand the differences between the two terms and advise you on how to select leaders for your business.
Management Vs. Leadership
Management is all about directing resources. Doing so effectively and efficiently is essential to every business, large and small.
- Effective in producing an effect or result. Results should be measurable and stem from the business’ goal.
- Efficient in achieving the result with the smallest expenditure of resources.
Leadership is all about communication. Leaders can steer their teams toward common goals and objectives. Essentially, employees will make or break your business at the end of the day. So, having well-motivated, competent employees does amazing things.
We’re all born with innate characteristics and develop competencies in response to our education, training and experiences. While some people are born with leadership potential, others develop it. Choose the right leaders, and your business will thrive.
What Makes a Good Leader
The character of a leader embodies who they are and what they believe. This ultimately affects how they act. Overall, character is composed of personal attributes, ethics, and values.
- Attributes – The foundation of character. These include things like self-discipline, judgement, intelligence, and motivation.
- Ethics – The framework character is built around and what we use to judge right and wrong. Common principles found among leaders are integrity, loyalty, fairness, respect, and responsibility.
- Values – The glue that holds character together. They’re beliefs about behaviour that guide our actions. Values include integrity, trustworthiness, professionalism, commitment, and customer service.
Leaders demonstrate their competence through knowledge and performance.
Knowledge helps to understand, communicate, research, solve, and create. It exists at three different levels:
- Tactical – The day-to-day operations of a business and the production of a product or delivery of a service.
- Operational – Planning operations in the near term and developing the organization over the medium term.
- Strategic – Deciding the organization’s direction and how to get there over the long term.
The practical application of skills is necessary at every level of an organization. However, the skills needed often change as a person advances in the ranks. Physical skills may be the focus at lower levels, while emotional and cognitive skills usually become more important at higher levels.
How To Select Leaders for Your Business
Leadership is a complex concept and may look different to every person and business. Specifically, you should start by taking a look at their character. It’s easier to train a novice in the fundamentals of your business rather than the integrity, judgement, and drive they need to accomplish things.
It also encompasses both the authority and the ability to lead others. Leaders should aim to influence and inspire others to complete tasks on their own. They’ll also need well-developed people and communication skills, as they’ll be most successful when trusted and accepted by those they lead. You’ll be amazed at how creative and motivated people can be, your business will thank you.
How Small Business BC Can Help Your Business
SBBC is a non-profit resource centre for BC-based small businesses. Whatever your idea of success is, we’re here to provide holistic support and resources at every step of the journey. Check out our range of business webinars, on-demand E-Learning Education, our Talk to an Expert Advisories, or browse our business articles.