Critical Leadership Differences
Leadership as the ability to take individuals, including yourself, on a
journey to a vision. This is accomplished by creating unified teams that focus all
of their energies and achieve the leadership’s vision in a reasonable period.
Leaders take teams to where they would not have gone on their own.
Alternatively, management was defined as those that have direct responsibility to
monitor the progress of an activity to its successful execution. In the process,
they may directly order others to act in a particular manner. A manager’s
authority is a direct result of the position and not necessarily the result of true
It’s important to understand that regardless of position or seniority,
everyone in the company is a leader. That’s because people influence each
other. You know the old expression: One bad apple ruins the bunch. We see
this in business time and time again. Suppose you hire a salesperson or
dismantler with a bad attitude. It doesn’t take long before that person’s negativity
affects everyone else around him or her. Before you know it, there’s a cancer
spreading that must be eliminated before it destroys the whole body, or business.
Conversely, I’ve seen situations where people with questionable attitudes do a
complete turnaround because the owners made sure they were surrounded by
enthusiastic and productive team members.
At The Rogers Group, we believe there are three kinds of leaders.
“Extraordinary leaders” are regarded as displaying above average ability and
capable of leading an organization to a process of continuous improvement.
These are the difference makers, the ones that insure that the team and the team
members will not be left behind. They achieve every goal with great enthusiasm
and fun. They promote organizational excellent organizational health.
“Healthy leaders” are regarded as a positive influence because they have
the attitudes, knowledge, and skills to inspire others to excel. These leaders are
necessary to keep the daily routines operational and up to quality standards, both
of which are critical to maintaining daily profitability. They are the stabilizing
force of the organization while contributing to its overall health.
Healthy leaders tend to be cautious about leading their team into
uncharted processes/territories. Regardless of the situation, however, it’s
incumbent upon extraordinary leaders to provide guidance while insuring that
healthy leaders incorporate those ideas that have proven to be successful.
“Diseased leaders” are not regarded as a healthy influence by peers,
superiors, and/or team members. Because these folks rarely achieve their own
goals and discourage others from achieving their missions in a timely fashion,/>
they’ll always retard the progress of the team.
It may seem harsh to think of leaders as being diseased. But if you have
someone who becomes an obstacle to team success, wouldn’t you better off
making that person expendable and sending them off to the competition?
The bottom line is that you only want people who add value to the
organization. And by doing so, they become healthy or extraordinary leaders,
both of whom make the company stronger and more profitable year-in and yearout.
In fact, about 10% of the staff from a healthy company should be
extraordinary leaders. Everyone else should be a healthy leader. Needless to
say, there is no room for diseased leadership of any kind.
Now it’s time for you to do an exercise. First write down the various traits
that you believe make for extraordinary, healthy, and diseased leaders. Then
take a good hard look at everyone in the company or on your team —starting
with yourself—and determine whether they’re extraordinary, healthy, or diseased
Once you make this assessment, you’ve got to determine how to proceed.
The good news is that leaders are not born, they’re developed. And as a leader
in your company, one of your prime responsibilities is to develop your people.
We at The Rogers Group have seen many examples of people who improved
their leadership skills with training, and in so doing became valuable assets to
the company. Of course, you also need to determine who the diseased leaders
are, the people whose destructive actions drive away customers and divide the
employees. You know what to do with them.
Although necessary, none of this is easy. But being a leader never is. As
President Harry Truman once said, “if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the
kitchen.” And if you need any assistance along the way, The Rogers Group will
be there for you.