Manager Vs Leader; Which Are You?

The terms “manager” and “leader” are often used interchangeably, but the truth is that they describe very different roles. Although both managers and leaders often stand at the head of an organisation and direct the path that a company takes, their attitudes and approaches are entirely different.   

While a manager could be someone who teaches their employees what the future of a business should look like, and how they can achieve specific goals, a leader is someone who creates a vision of success and inspires their team to connect and engage with the idea.

As a result, their team will want to follow, and in doing so, they will be committed to facing and overcoming whatever obstacles, they face as well as any uncertainties and risks.  

Often, a distinction is made in which management means “doing things right”, while leadership involves “doing the right things”.  While most people will share the characteristics of both great leaders and great managers, the following differences could help you establish which you are today and which you may prefer to be.  

1. Vision Vs Strategy

A leader is typically someone who thinks more about the “big picture” for a team, brand, or company, rather than focusing on which systems and processes will be needed to realise the vision.

Leaders outline the direction of the route they want to take and communicate the goals and milestones that need to be achieved along the way. Then they empower their teams and give them the freedom to achieve the goals. These professionals know what they want to accomplish, and believe in the ability of their team members to find the best path to success.  

Alternatively, managers focus more on what needs doing, what systems and processes are used and if they are being utilised in the ‘right way’. You could say that managers focus on managing ‘things’ rather than people.

Leaders consider the overall vision to be the most important factor in success, while managers concentrate on the details of how to bring that vision to life. The reality is an organisation requires
both.  

A great leader relies on imagination and creativity intended to motivate a group of employees towards a shared ambition. A manager looks at what worked for them in the past and builds a strategy based on numbers, data, and measurable results; specifying exactly what needs to be completed to reach a goal. One doesn’t work without the other. Often, however, individuals have a natural preference for one of these roles. Both can also be learnt.  

2. Growth Vs Sustainability

When a manager thinks about how they can be successful, they’re often concerned with devising a plan to sustain whatever they’re managing. They are inclined to look for the best ways to keep a system working for as long as possible. While they may look for improvements, a leader is more likely to look for change and innovation. The latter provides greater opportunity for development and growth, both of systems and people.   

A leader is more willing to take risks because they know the only way to evolve, is to change, they  inspire others to do the same.

 

3. People Vs Systems 

A great manager knows how to create a system for success. They evaluate the strategies used in the past to make informed decisions about the future. Managers not only put the right systems into place for exceptional results, but they also know how to get the right employees involved within that system too – delegating tasks to the people with the most appropriate skills.  

By focusing on the people behind the work, managers can access an incredible amount of knowledge that’s impossible to achieve with a company handbook. While managers are crucial to organisational success, a leader recognises what it takes to motivate people, inspire change, and encourage action. 

4. Courage Vs Discipline

As we have already mentioned, a manager tends to be more risk averse their focus is on bringing a strategy to life by following using systems, processes and guidelines. They keep individuals in their team on track and make sure that everything comes together as planned. They often have an attention to detail and can monitor progress ensuring deadlines are met. 

Contrastingly, a leader’s life is often filled with risk and uncertainty. Leaders make decisions based on educated risks when planning what’s next for the business and team. Sometimes this can involve setting a course that takes the company and team into uncharted waters.

To shoulder such decisions, taking both responsibility and accountability requires courage. Generally,
leaders have a plentiful supply of it.   

 

About Resource on Demand 

Resource on Demand is Europe’s first specialist Salesforce Recruitment Company. We assist the world’s leading organisations in growing their technology teams. Supporting companies to fill roles that span across digital marketing, marketing automation, Human Capital Management, CRM system management and, Salesforce developer, Salesforce consultant and Salesforce admin jobs. 

The team at Resource on Demand have access to an extensive database of key talent, registering over 8000 professionals each year. To find out how we can support you call us on +44 (0)20 8123 7769 

Managers & Leaders: Which one are you?

Working in recruitment, I am no stranger to people asking me, what makes a good Salesforce manager and what makes a good Salesforce leader? And aren’t they the same thing?Salesforce Manager

Whilst it’s true that someone could actually be both an excellent manager and an inspiring leader, flitting between the two depending on the situation, there are certain traits that set the two roles apart.

Managers Set Goals; Leaders Shape Visions

Managers are there to ensure that a team is working effectively and efficiently.  They are responsible for understanding what needs to be accomplished and ensuring that this is communicated to the team.  They will go to great pains to ensure that goals and performance is carefully monitored. And that the overall objectives for individuals, the team and the company are met.

Leaders on the other hand, are very much about selling new ideas to the team. Rather than set goals they will encourage people to be creative; to think for themselves and carve and seek out new opportunities for the business.

Managers Control Risks; Leaders Take Risks

A Manager’s aim is to reduce or minimise risk for the business. And should they need to take risks, they are usually carefully calculated, drawing from past data to ensure that the company is not unduly exposed.

Leaders on the other hand, try new things.  Often they will break the rules as the navigate uncharted territory for the company.  They often think about the long-term bigger picture and are at their weakest when bogged down in detail.

Managers Fear Change; Leaders Hate Repetition

Good Managers are often process driven. Every area of the business will have a carefully tried-and-test well thought out workflow.  Managers will be adept at seeing problems in the process and will have a plan to resolve it before it escalates.

Leaders on the other hand, challenge.  They will take a process, whether it’s broken or not and try to figure out, how to make it better.  They will seek areas for improvement and will continuously question those around them.

Managers Instruct; Leaders Encourage

Managers tend to ‘tell’ others what needs to be done, giving approval and feedback to their employees when things go right, or wrong. They establish the rules in which their employees work, assigning duties as they go. They rely heavily on control and most decisions are made in a logical way, deciding on what makes most ‘sense’ for the business.

Leaders on the other hand, encourage those around them to think for themselves and try new things. They motivate individuals and actively encourage new ideas.  For them mistakes are all part of the learning journey. They inspire trust in others, and often go by gut instinct alone.

Whether you consider yourself a Manager, a Leader, or even a bit of both; there is almost certainly place for both in any business. The best businesses in the world may have an inspiring Leader at the helm. But, you can bet on there being a talented Manager at the helm.

Resource On Demand is Europe’s first specialist Salesforce Recruitment Company. We assist the world’s leading organisations to grow their technology teams. Supporting companies to fill roles that span across digital marketing, marketing automation, Human Capital Management, CRM system management and, Salesforce developer, Salesforce consultant and Salesforce admin jobs.

The team at Resource On Demand have access to an extensive database of key talent, registering over 8000 professionals each year. To find out how we can support you call us on +44 20 8123 7769 or rod@resourceondemand.com.