Welcome to this inaugural posting by The HR Gov Gal!
As a featured blogger on Govloop, I will be posting every Wednesday, with work-related career tips and my thoughts about Civil Service employment with the Federal government. Future topics include the job search, developing yourself for promotion, getting the most out of work, tapping into your benefits, and similar topics that affect the employment experience. My inaugural blog, while short & sweet, touches upon the differences between Leadership and Management. I encourage you to comment and I welcome your requests for future blogs.
Do you think training will make you an effective leader, a great manager, or both? Before you answer that question, read this…
Many organizations teach leadership skills but let’s face it, if the ability to lead isn’t within you, why do you think you are (or will be) any good at applying the training?
According to Jonathon Doh in Perspectives from Management Educators, leadership basics can be taught but good leaders need more than mere knowledge, they also need character, the right values and ethics. Leadership doesn’t just require knowing the skills needed to be effective; it also requires tapping into one’s innate abilities.
Leadership and management are not interchangeable. Managers are responsible for work activities such as money, time, paperwork, materials, equipment, etc. Leaders are people who can influence others. In 1986, Admiral Hopper made this point clear when she said, “You cannot manage <people> into battle. You manage things; you lead people.” So, even the best managers should not be confused with great leaders.
True leaders are born into these roles; everyone does not have it in them to be an effective leader. Although leaders can learn to be effective managers, leadership is not necessarily something that effective managers can learn. Leadership training, therefore, is simply knowledge to managers while it is useful to true leaders since it can help bring about their full and innate leadership potential.
It’s more accurate to say that effective leadership skills can be taught, but leadership skills also must be honed in a personal & intuitive way so as to shape and develop one’s natural leadership abilities. After all, you can lead a horse to water but… well, if the horse can’t or won’t drink, was one’s leadership effective?