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May '19

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88 • RV PRO • May 2019 rv-pro.com B U S I N E S S Managers are often task-oriented – and not necessarily focused on their employees. Leaders, on the other hand, are people-ori- ented – they work through and motivate their employees, utilizing their resources to perform assigned tasks in the most productive and prof- itable way possible. Many managers confuse management with leadership, and feel they are automatically leaders because they occupy a position of higher respon- sibility. While this assumption is often true, many fail to display active leadership qualities. The roles leaders fulfill are different than those of managers, although sound manage- ment practices are complementary to effective leadership. While some individuals are natural leaders, most managers must evolve into leaders both by investing time and effort in developing their abilities and by adapting their management roles to a more flexible, effective leadership style. Leaders learn how to harness the specific tal- ents of every employee. While this may appear to be more work than it's worth, effective leaders are able to produce higher levels of productivity with fewer problems than from simply using traditional managing techniques. When leaders adhere to specific leadership roles they will foster trust, inward strength and a unity of purpose in the people under their direction. As leaders, they will embrace their own per- sonal responsibilities, understanding that any- thing is possible and attainable. They will rec- ognize that each specific element is a stepping stone that ultimately creates a transition from managing to leadership. The Three Key Principles of Leadership To define a personal leadership role, the fol- lowing three principles are critical: Self-management. Leaders take complete responsibility for all their actions and decisions. Often, leaders must make a decision to challenge rules proven to be detrimental to their overall work environment and the people entrusted to them. The role of a leader is to set aside ineffective or unproductive rules and procedures in favor of those promoting increased cooperation, trust and ownership. Leaders never waiver in this pursuit. They understand that part of their role is to take risks whenever a policy, procedure or situation hinders progress – and stand by their decisions. Making improvements often means rocking the boat. While often challenging to the best leaders, this is a substantial part of true lead- ership. Leaders recognize the status quo often isn't good enough – and that it takes change and creativity to generate improvements. Leading people. Leaders approach their roles with serious determination. Part of their role is not to dwell on the "rear- view mirror," but to look forward. They learn from past mistakes and errors in judgment, but never allow them to affect future opportunities and possibilities. Leaders learn to detach them- selves from their circumstances to maintain a clear, forward-thinking perspective. In order to succeed, leaders must unburden themselves of emotions and perceived limita- tions that impede attainment of goals and per- formance. They know past experiences can easily alter good judgment. For a leader, past experi- ences become the lessons for the future – pro- ducing the wisdom to adapt to change. Leaders know situations or problems will not always fit into neat compartments and have pre- dictable outcomes. They understand and accept that even the most unthinkable changes and devastating occurrences are a possibility – and that their role is to embrace the challenge to overcome them. Leaders also know they must be flexible in By Timothy F. Bednarz, Ph.D. Timothy F. Bednarz, Ph.D., is the author of the 125 books included in Pinpoint Skill Development Training Series (this column is an excerpt from that series) . He also has authored "Great! What Make Leaders Great," which was selected by Forward Review Magazine as one of the Top 10 career books published in 2011. For more information, email timothy.bednarz@ majorium.com or visit www.majorium businesspress.com. Leaders vs. Managers Many managers confuse management with leadership, and feel they are automatically leaders because they occupy a position of higher responsibility. However, leaders stand above managers because they bring out the best in their employees.

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