Leadership is different to management. We can all agree on that. Much is written on this subject and I will not repeat it here.
What I do want to talk about is how Leadership is often about the balance that we maintain between the tasks we need to do, the team’s ability to work together and the needs of individuals in their work context.
As a leader we have to balance these three items.
- Tasks – We all have a long list of tasks to do. Starting these as your first action of the day at work we will be under-cooking our responsibilities in the other two categories. If a leader is actioning many of the tasks it’s a good sign they are a micro-manager. This does not go down well with the teams and individuals.
- Teams – Often overlooked. The team delivers the task. When the team is working well together they produce more. If there is conflict or poor communication they might do less; or worse, more of the wrong stuff. Teams consist of ……
- Individuals – We all have our own needs and issues. If these distract us too much we can not devote ourselves to the team. Good leaders resolve issues for people, leaving them motivated to take part.
Here is a simple test that you can do if you are a leader.
Ask team members to draw three overlapping circles, each representing their impression of how task, team and individual needs are satisfied in their role. The size of the circles they draw should represent how satisfied they are with each aspect of their role.
The results might surprise you.