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Effective Managers and Leaders: Balancing Demands

A Manager as an Effective Leader

A manager is a person who plans, coordinate, budget, and staff of the organization. They plan the operations of the enterprise and supervise the employees. A manager concerns himself with the preparation of the budget. They match the resources in the company in the effort of propelling the company forward. Managers deal with complex situations. Their duties include controlling and staffing the organization and solving the problems that arise. A manager who is an effective leader will embody the qualities of an outstanding leader and the qualities he posses. He will join the two qualities together and work at maximizing them. A manager who is an effective manager will deal with a complex situation by finding the best remedy for the situation, (Dale 1969 pp. 56). He will initiate change in the organization. A manager, on the other hand, handles the situation by eliminating the factor and going on with the operation of the company (Bryman, 2011 pp. 45).

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A manager who aims at becoming an effective leader will have to look for ways of motivating his employees, in an effort to increase their productivity just as leaders do. A manager, on the other hand, will reward or punish those who do well or do not meet his set standards. Therefore, an effective manager who leads well will inspire his employees by providing a healthy working environment making them put in maximum effort to their work. A leader will try to influence his employees to do something. A manager has the responsibility of making things happen whether he uses force or not. This means that an effective manager will influence the employees to conform to reform (Northouse 2009 pp. 56).

A manager organizes his staff and lays down the rules while a leader supports his staff in whatever task they are performing. An effective leader will have to support his or her employees in their duties. It involves getting in touch with them and understanding them. This will narrow the difference between them and their manager (McMahon & Komives 2009 pp. 47). An example of such a circumstance is when an employee has a problem. A leader will want to know the cause of the problem and look for ways to help the employee solve the problem.

The manager runs the company based on the rules set by other people. His goal is to ensure that the company is functioning. A leader, on the other hand, brings about change and does not believe in doing things the traditional way. He comes up with new ideas that aim at increasing the productivity of the company. The same applies to the ideas used in the business. An example is when a manager takes over the management of a business; he does nothing to change the policies of the business. However, a leader will evaluate the policies and look for alternative policies that will improve the status of the business, (Drucker 1991 pp 98).

An effective manager with the aim of sustaining the company for a long time will start planning for the future of the company in his budget. He will set allocate capital for the expansion of the business. This is what a true leader does; thinking and planning for the future but not forgetting that the present matters.

Leaders as effective managers

A leader is a person who concerns himself with seeing the operation of the company in the future. Unlike the director whose main focus is controlling the business and dealing with short term situations, a leader plans for long term policies. The primary focus of a leader is inspiring people to work harder than they always do in the effort of meeting the demands of the vision he or she have in mind through effective communication, (McMahon Lucas & Komives 2009 pp 367).

A manager accepts a situation or a reality as it is and does not investigate or question the situation. A leader, on the other hand, goes into the depths of the situation in search of reasons as to why or where it happened. This is time-consuming and waste of resources. An effective leader will investigate the situation, but learn to accept others that happen with no reason. The focuses of a leader are on the welfare of the employees and seek to improve their productivity. However, an effective leader should merge the personnel, the organization, and resources together. This is because the success of the business depends on the equilibrium of the three factors (Achua & Lussier 2009 pp. 34). So, the leader to be an effective manager needs to be a good organizer, director, and planner.

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Balancing the demands of management and leadership

A manager uses force, rewards, and punishment in running the business. He awards those who meet his expectations and punish those who perform below the level he expects. However, a leader builds trust with the people. To be an effective leader and manager demands that one combines the two qualities; building trust with employees and appreciating their work. A manager accepts the position given to him by society and works hard to ensure that the company runs smoothly. However, a leader will take meaningful actions that seek to improve the status of the company. An effective leader/manager will work hard to change the status quo of the company and at the same time work hard to improve the image of the organization. A manager who only takes action will be of great use to the company in the short term, but a leader takes steps that are long term. Therefore, an effective leader should learn to take both effective and meaningful actions, (Palestini 2009 pp. 102).

An effective leader or manager will maximize the use of will communication with his employees and get information from them. Communication will help pass crucial information and ensure that the information is clear. Leaders use language to get work done, but the manager’s use other tactics like punishments. However, some situations demand that leaders become firm in their decisions. This is essential when employees are not doing their work well despite the leader’s instructions.

Table1. Comparing leaders and managers

Uses force, punishments, and rewards Uses trust, understanding, and motivation Appreciates his/her employee’s hard work and encourages them by understanding their needs
Focuses on the smooth running of the business in the present Focuses on the future of the company Concerned about the present status of the company, but know that the future of the company is equally important
Issues orders and instructions to workers Good communication skills Has effective communication skills, but can be strict when the situation demands
Concerned with technology as an important resource Personnel are the most important resources Blends both the technology and personnel to achieve his/her objectives
Concerned with short term goals Long term objectives Uses the short term objectives to achieve long goals.

Role of leaders in the development of organizations’ vision

A leader has the duty of planning for the future of the organization. His or her roles in the business include seizing any opportunity that comes his way and uses it to the advantage of the organization. The leader collects vital details and merges them with the past and present situation. After gathering information and seeing whether it will be beneficial to the company or not, the leader put it into the plan. He sets the objectives he or she wants to achieve t the end, and influence the other stakeholders in the organization to follow his set objectives and goals. He does all this step by step until he achieves his goal.

The first thing that the leader will do is to develop a strategic plan that is future-oriented. After this he or she will call the stakeholders together and share his or her ideas with them; he/she seeks their views and opinions and integrate them into the plan. After incorporating the ideas he/she has with those from the stakeholders, the leader will think of how to implement the plan; what he/she requires, and how to get them. The next thing that a leader would do is to share his plan and the necessities with the other members. Through proper communication, the leader builds a strong team with the stakeholders and this translates to trust and understanding among them. The leader then goes ahead and faces the risks and challenges that come with the implementation of his/her plan, (Northuse, 2009).

Leadership styles

An effective leader believes in his capabilities as a role model. Through communication, the leader persuades the employees to work harder than they are now. The leader shares their day to day activities, making them accept him as one of them. By so doing, the leader can influence them to accept the changes he or she want to put into effect. A leader should do his or her work with dedication and passion as this is important in energizing the employees, (Koommoo, Welch 2008 pp. 34). The employees follow the footsteps of the leader and make the business profitable. Employees who do their work with dedication and effectiveness get rewarded by either giving them promotions or increasing their salaries. This is an essential policy so that employees can develop a sense of responsibility and hard work so that they get a pay rise or get a promotion, (Bischoff 2010 pp 132). Rewarding them varies according to the degree of dedication an employee has to his or her work. Those who do not work hard after getting promotions can get a demotion and the positions given to those who are improving their work. Another important technique in motivating the employees is through the provision of a healthy working environment.

Impact of ethical leadership for the organization

A leader will look for ways to motivate his or her employees. There are many theories that guide him or her in motivating them. One of them is the activation theory. He or she should focus on the need to maintain arousal in the individual in order to make them productive. To achieve this, he or she should maintain the arousal level of employees by making them know that they are of high value to the organization and rewarding them for the work well done.

The endowed progress effect theory was also influential in keeping the employees motivated. The continuous progress of the company is a prime motivation factor because it proves that the effort they are putting in is not in vain. The manager should not use the profits that the company makes to judge and appreciate the employees, but on the efforts that they put into the work, they perform. When the employees see that their work is valuable and is vital in making the organization successful, and they will continue working hard.

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The expectancy theory states that the things we want to happen or wish to happen to motivate us to work hard. The theory was effective because we had set the objectives with the workers before we started working on projects that year that we were going to double the profits earned that year. The reward of meeting this target was a treat to all the members of the company. The employees worked extremely hard, and fortunately, we achieved the target we had set, (Belker & Topchik 2005 pp 134).

Types of leadership styles

There are different leadership styles depending on the way a leader runs his organization and the relationship he has with his employees. One of them is the Autocratic leadership style. The leadership is a highly transactional one. The leader has total control over his employees. He considers himself as the only decision making party in the organization. He or she does not take into account the view or feelings of his employees. The autocratic leadership undermines the dignity of the employees, leading to low levels of productivity due to absenteeism. The employees tend to dislike this leadership because the leader treats them like machines or objects with no feelings. The employees lack the motivation required to achieve maximum productivity. The leadership style translates low levels of production due to the lack of a close relationship that always leads to adjustments of the working conditions, (Smith 1987 pp 67).

However, there are some cases where this leadership is relevant. Such cases include places where the employees lack the skills required for the job. The leader will have to ensure that the workers follow the proper procedures for the work. The leadership style is also applicable, for employees who perform routine duties. This is where the work involves a repetition of the previous work.

A leader should use the democratic leadership style in the past because it is more productive than the autocratic style. Partnership leadership is the other name of democratic leadership. Here, the leader communicates well with the employees he seeks information and opinions concerning different matters. However, he or she is the one who does the analysis of the findings and makes the final decision. Leadership leads to high levels of productivity. The high levels of productivity are a result of team work encouraged by this leadership style. The employees have control over their work. If the employees he/ she deal with are highly competent and worked under less or no supervision, then he/she should use the democratic leadership style (Armstrong 2011 pp 245).

Dealing with the employees with all the skills required is easy because they always consulted whenever they had a problem. Therefore, it makes it easy to coordinate the resources and the employees. A good example of such a situation was when he/she wants to establish a new policy in the organization. He/she will sit down and consult with the employees and use their opinions to implement the policy. When it comes to the implementation of the policy, the employees will feel comfortable. This is because they were a part of the team designing the policy.

Democratic leadership entails the use of dialog in its operation. Therefore, he/she shares ideas and got to know the position of the employees regarding their work. He/she receives suggestions on the necessary changes in the organization. The style translates to the production of quality products through joint efforts from the manager and the employees. It will also lead to better team work and determination. This results from the interaction between the manager and employees as he seeks their opinions on different matters. He will get the chance of identifying the characters of each one of his employees.

One of them is the demands and needs of the organization. This is highly dependent on the level of skills of the employees. The democratic style applies to a group of employees who have a lot of experience and possess the right skills. An example of such a situation is when the leader has to manage the planning of a building and oversee its construction. The people he/she works with should be aware of their duties and have the skills that the job required. The leader should have no difficulty in handling them and the most appropriate leadership style he/she could use was the democratic style, (Chandler & Black 2007 pp 69). They use to discuss the procedures and work together to implement them.

Another determinant is the nature of the work that the employees are doing. Dealing with a group of employees who are doing conventional work is a problem and forces me to use the autocratic leadership style. This is as a result of a lack of new ideas for doing the work differently. The workers lack the skills and energy required to do the job efficiently, forcing me to constantly be there to supervise them and impose policies without their consent. The employees did not know the procedures for completing the job and this meant that a single mistake could cost the company a lot.

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An effective leader or manager cares about the welfare of all the stakeholders. He does everything to ensure that the business runs smoothly. He will combine efforts with the employees in making sure that the organization succeeds. The leader will lead the company ethically and always know that both employees and resources are essential in making the company successful. They work hard to make sure that the organization runs smoothly.

Reflective statement

The external assignment is crucial in shaping the way I will handle my role as a leader or manager in the future. The assignment is about the basic qualities that I should have as an effective leader. This will help shape my leadership roles and prepare me for the duties I will handle once I get into the working sector. The external assignment served as a linkage to the world of management. It gave me the opportunity of being in touch with the experienced people in management who have the experience I will need when I start working. It exposed me to the different qualities that I will require as a manager and the importance of communication in the organization. The assignment seeks to prepare me to incorporate the qualities that are indispensable in making a business successful. I learned a person cannot claim to be a successful leader or manager without having the qualities of the other. This forced me to review my goals and outline my strengths and weaknesses. After this, I had to evaluate my weaknesses and improve them by incorporating the values I lacked in order to be an all-around leader and manager. Balancing the qualities is vital in creating a leader who can handle difficult situations as a leader as well as a manager.

The knowledge I gained while undertaking this assignment will help me to decide what leadership styles I will use while dealing with different people and jobs. The research was helpful in exposing me to the different motor skills that are effective in inspiring the workers. The theories are helpful in making the employees’ output go up and increase the income of any organization. I also learned that the way a manager or leader deals with the employees or handle situations is vital to establishing the future of the company. After completing the assignment, I am aware of the challenges and I am prepared to perform my duties as a leader and manager that sets the pace of the company.

Reference List

Achua, C. F., & Lussier, R. N. 2009. Leadership: Theory, Application, & Skill Development. New York: Cengage Learning.

Armstrong, M. 2011. How to Be an Even Better Manager: A Complete A-Z of Proven Techniques and Essential Skills. Michigan: Kogan Page Publishers.

Belker, L. B., & Topchik, G. S. 2005. The first-time manager. Chicago: AMACOM Div American Mgmt Assn.

Bischoff, A. L. 2010. Leadership Theories: Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi: The Application of Leadership Skills in Business life on a Great Leader of Our Time. Hampshire: GRIN Verlag.

Bryman, A. 2011. The SAGE Handbook of Leadership. Carolina: SAGE Publications Ltd.

Chandler, S., & Black. D. 2007. The Hands-off Manager: How to Mentor People and Allow Them to Be Successful. Florida: Career Press.

Dale, E. 1969. McGraw-Hill series in management. New York: Rex Bookstore, Inc.

Drucker, P. F. 1991. Management: tasks, responsibilities, practices. London: Taylor & Francis.

Gaynor, H.G. 2004. What every new manager needs to know: making a successful transition to management. Chicago: AMACOM Div American Mgmt Assn. 237 pages.

Koommoo, Welch, P. 2008. Implicit leadership theories: Perceptions of charisma, people, and performance. Carolina: ProQuest.

McMahon, T. R., Lucas, N., & Komives, S. R. 2009. Exploring Leadership: For College Students Who Want to Make a Difference. Paris: John Wiley and Sons.

Northouse, G. P. 2009. Leadership: Theory and Practice. Carolina: SAGE.

Palestini, H. R. 2009. From leadership theory to practice: a game plan for success as a leader. London: R&L Education.

Smith, J. R. 1987. Manager: a simulation. New York: Houghton Mifflin.

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