The difference for me between management and leadership is the power of influence. I think of a leader and in my mind this creates the image of a person who is able to exert high social influence through spreading a vision to a vast group of individuals which creates positive action. ‘Influence' seems to be a somewhat mysterious concept, which makes the topic of leadership versus management a fascinating concept to try and pin down and comprehend.
Leadership… the courage to stand up for what is right or the courage to do what is right. I once read a quote that said that management do things right but leaders do the right things. I wouldn’t say it is as clear cut as that, but it holds on the right direction of thought for trying to distinguish between these two terms.
Leadership does not involve easy, quick, solutions, but in my opinion is the ability to lead your group or your colleagues on a journey for success, one that they share the vision that you have created and give them energy and motivation to carry this out.
Companies can spend thousands of pounds on leadership programmes for their workers yet in a study of 4,000 companies, 58% apparently highlighted significant talent gaps for leadership goals (Torres, 2014). What is the intangible difference within leadership? Some say it is a quality you are born with, maybe part of it is to do with your charisma.
I believe once again the signs point towards the human element, the way you make people feel and the way that they are able to connect with you and then how this in turn motivates them to do what you wish them to do. The brilliant idea about leadership is that leaders manage to get people to do what they want to do, because they simply want to, rather than because they are merely told.
How does this play into health and safety? At Acting Up we get in touch with the human element to help you lead the way in health and safety.
Emmanuelle Sangster, Editor
Acting Up Ltd.