- Supervisors & managers
- Leadership development for principal investigators
- Managing people
- Leadership and management
Leadership and management
Anyone who has browsed an airport bookshop will know that there are numerous books on this topic; Amazon UK offers over 35,000!
This section tries to offer you a straightforward way through this mass of literature and starts with two possibly reassuring comments, and one more worrying one:
- most good leadership and management is common sense
- you have to find your own ways of leading and managing
- they take time.
Leadership or management?
First let's address the leadership/management distinction. Yes there is a difference, but no it's not worth agonising over. As Alan Bryman puts it in his review of Effective Leadership in Higher Education, "...distinguishing between them becomes a semantic exercise that is difficult to apply in concrete situations."
It is, however, helpful to have a general sense of the difference (slightly adapted) from Bennis (1997):
A manager... A leader...
Focuses on systems/structures
Focuses on people
Relies on control
Has a short-range view
Has a long-range perspective
Asks how and when?
Asks what and why?
Looks at the bottom line
Looks at the horizon
Accepts status quo
Challenges status quo
Does things right
Does the right things
The important point to note is that they are both needed, and in different situations.
It is certainly not a case of management bad, leadership good. But look at all the things that you have to do - hence the comment about it taking time.
Have a look at the Bennis list and try to work out which of these items you feel more drawn to.
Probably there are some that you could do if you had to but are there any that just don't feel right for you?
Comment on this page.