People in leadership positions who attempt to manage their people use their head to get good things done. They expect their people to use their head as well. They are more manager than leader.
People in leadership positions who actually lead use their head and their heart to encourage their people to accomplish great things. They are as concerned with their people’s heart as much as their heads. They are more leader than manager but they are often excellent managers as well. However, they do not manage their people, they lead them.
People in leadership positions who attempt to manage people are so focused on what needs to get done that they forget it is people, real life human beings, who will get that work done. That causes them to often treat their people as something rather than someone.
Leaders lead. The need neither a leadership position or title to do it. Their first priority is the people who will do the work, not the work itself. They invest the time required to understand how their people think and why they think that way. They know their hopes, their challenges and their goals.
They help them in any area they possibly can. They will compassionately confront them when that is what is needed for them to succeed. They coach them. They mentor them. They care for them.
They do not tell them what to do, they show them. They model successful behavior. They hold their people to high standards and hold themselves to even higher standards.
Leaders who lead earn the commitment of their people. That commitment leads to increased productivity and extraordinary results.
People have hearts and it’s those hearts that truly need leadership. If you’re in a leadership position and you’re not leading your people then don’t expect them to put their hearts into their work. They may indeed use their heads to do good things but greatness will elude them. It will almost certainly elude you as well.