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Leadership: The Key To Strong Management

655 words - 3 pages

Leadership: The Key to Strong Management

We live in an era of communication challenges. It is an age of increasingly scarce management and education to the markets of tomorrow. To solve this problem, to improve and restore the competitive edge of business, I recommend teaching leadership as well as organization. We need to move beyond the simplistic and boring, everyday organizational skills commonly taught in core courses in business schools. Important as these skills are, we need to redirect our foci towards the essential ingredient required to put these skills to work – leadership. As Warren Bennis and Burt Nanus have expressed it, “The problem with many organizations…is that they tend to be over managed and under led. There is a profound difference between management and leadership, and both are important.” “To manage” means “to bring about, to accomplish, to have charge or responsibility for, to conduct.” “Leading” is “influencing, guiding in direction, course, action, opinion.” Other characteristics include: motivating and inspiring individuals, providing direction and vision, earning the respect of others, turning talent and efforts into results, and being an excellent communicator and listener.

The distinction is crucial. “Managers are people who do things right, and leaders are people that do the right thing”. The difference may be summarized as activities of vision and judgment – effectiveness versus activities of management routines – efficiency.” Do students need leadership education? There is a considerable body of evidence that suggests that they do. First it is clear that something is not working. Businesses fail frequently. For example, a recent study funded by the Small Business Administration indicates that 37.3 percent of businesses survive the first six years after start-up. In this fiercely competitive age, we cannot afford a Thirty-seven percent success rate. We know action is called for, but is leadership education a top priority? Research on reasons for business failure hints at inept leadership, but usually cites...

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