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Posts Tagged ‘Vision’

Which Are You Providing – Clarity or Confusion?

One of the known issues in business today is the element of complexity. As a Leader, you need to guide your people through the maze of complexity to a world of simple solutions and progress. So, what is the real issue?

Seems like confusion is higher ranked, mostly by default than purposeful actions on the part of leaders. I know, you’re asking “everyone is dealing with complexity so what can I do about it?”

Good question – really, I mean it 🙂   The only missing piece of the question is “how can you take responsibility to change the situation for your team?”

Differences between Managers and Leaders

An important difference but the two work in tandem…

“Leadership and management are two distinctive and complementary systems of action. Each has its own function and characteristic activities. Both are necessary for success in an increasingly complex and volatile business environment…strong leadership with weak management is no better, and is sometimes actually worse, than the reverse. The real challenge is to combine strong leadership and strong management and use each to balance the other.”
— John Kotter, Management/Leadership Author and Professor of Organizational Behavior, Harvard Business School

Traits of Managers versus Leaders

A helpful way to look at the difference between management and leadership is to look at actionable words or verbs that often separate the two.   Below are some typical words that can be associated with each.


  • Short-term focus
  • Objectives
  • Controls
  • Tracks
  • Organizes
  • Follow the rules
  • Authority
  • Reactive
  • Transactional
  • Who did it?


  • Long-term focus
  • Vision
  • Unleashes passion in others
  • Creates change environment
  • Creates safe environment
  • Colors off the page
  • Charismatic
  • Pro-active
  • Relationship driven
  • Why not?

Again, in a well organized world both managers and leaders are necessary.  Sometimes you can move from manager to leader or from leader to manager.  A Success Habit– in most cases-is to remain in one place or the other for the majority of your time.

Great Leaders are Effective Communicators

Continuing the theme of Effective Communication Month, I want to address the importance of communication as a key leadership trait.

In every leadership development process, leadership assessment, 360 feedback report and leadership position analysis – communication is shown as one of the most important traits necessary for effective leadership.

So what is so important about communication and leadership? Here are some of the factors that influence the importance of communication:

You Have to Earn It!

Listening to President Obama’s speech, one sentence rang out loud and true. “You have to earn it!” And, he connected to dots of this statement with Greatness. He is right, you cannot be given greatness – you have to earn it. This goes for business people and individuals as well as nations.

I have gotten tired of so many expecting something while giving so little. The greedy executive, union rep, sales person, manager, consultant or stockholder. You do have to earn it or at some point pay the piper! There are a few types that I believe need to re-think their positions. Let me explain.

Do You Have a Clear Vision of the Future?

This is the question that separates the winners from the losers. Do YOU have a clear vision of the future? This question applies to companies, departments, teams and people. The best take creating their future very seriously and will take the time to create and design their future.

The Losers of the world live by the Law of Accident – which means they have no plan or vision for the future – they just wait for others to tell them what to do or worst, just take things as the occur no matter what the consequences! Unfortunately, this is where the vast majority of people hang their hats. They live to execute others’ plans and vision. What amazes me is that they have the time to complain about how they lack of success and how dull their lives have become.

What can you do to create your future?