5 Ways to be a Leader, Not a Manager

Like this on Facebook

Have you ever wondered about the difference between a manager and a leader?

Jennifer Hill has. Having held senior leadership positions with some top global financial institutions and in her current role as CFO for Global Banking and Global Markets with Bank of America, she’s learned a thing or two about what leadership is – and isn’t.

Jennifer recently packed many of those lessons into an enlightening five-minute kickoff keynote for my Poised for Leadership workshop in New York City.

How does she define leadership? “When I think about the qualities I admire most in leaders, three words come to mind,” she shared with thirty-five workshop participants. “They are responsibility, accountability, and decisiveness.”

Jennifer also stresses that we shouldn’t confuse leadership with management. “There is a big difference,” said Jennifer, who knows this from experience. “I have been led by some great people and I’d been micromanaged by some horrible people,” she admitted. Here are five lessons on leading, not managing, that Jennifer learned from the best leaders she has worked with.

1. Listen more and speak less.

Jennifer pointed out that being a good listener and hearing the thoughts and inspirations of others can help you, even when you’re the one in charge. And, she added “People feel good when they feel heard.”

2. Consensus is good but… direction and decisiveness create action.

Leading by consensus will rally a team around a common goal, but according to Jennifer, that alone is not enough to be a leader and create change. “Consensus is good but direction and decisiveness create action,” she emphasized. “You must guide consensus.”

3. Anyone can identify a problem. A leader is part of the solution.

“Leaders don’t sit around and complain about what’s wrong,” Jennifer said. They drive solutions. “They figure out how to make it right,” she added.

4. Apologize publicly and gloat privately.

True leaders don’t just praise publicly and criticize privately. They are also humble enough to apologize publicly and gloat privately.

“You don’t see leaders bragging about their success,” said Jennifer. “They talk about their team and their team’s contributions. And if they feel really good about themselves, they do it at home or with a close friend but not publicly.” A leader will apologize and take accountability their actions.

5. Give the hard message.

“It’s very easy to praise somebody. It’s easy to give somebody a raise or a good review.” It can be much harder, however, to have the tough conversations.

While admitting that this might sound like a harsh thing to say, Jennifer pointed out that not everyone does an outstanding job all the time. “You’ve got to tell them, and then you’ve got to move on,” she acknowledged.

The Takeaway

Her parting words for the group were filled with encouragement to strive to be a leader and not just a manager. “Learn to inspire and motivate as opposed to dictate,” she said in closing. “At the end of the day, good leaders often don’t do the work but they make you feel like they did.”

 

Jo Miller

Jo is Founding Editor of Be Leaderly, CEO of Women’s Leadership Coaching, Inc., and creator of the Women’s Leadership Coaching® system, a roadmap for women who want to break into leadership. She has traveled in Europe, North America, Asia Pacific, and the Middle East to deliver keynotes and workshops, and counts being the only Aussie women’s leadership coach in Iowa among her unique “koalafications.” Learn more about Jo’s services at womensleadershipcoaching.com and follow @jo_miller on Twitter.

Recommended

3 weird tips for instant influence

3 weird tips for instantly increasing your influence I spend a lot of time browsing online to research stuff that might help women lead, climb ...

Leaderly Quote: Create a loyal following if you want to get ahead.

As I head to Orlando for the ProjectWorld and World Congress for Business Analysts East conference to talk about influencing, leading without authority, and office ...

Emerging Leader Spotlight: Claudia Caryevschi

Every month we ask an emerging leader we admire to share what she is doing to take the lead in her career. We invite her ...

Ready to lead?

We'll show you how!
Get email updates from Be Leaderly.

Our mission is to provide the career strategies that help you lead, climb and thrive as a rising woman of influence.

Four Types of Questions To Ask Your Mentor

Have conversations with your mentor gotten a bit repetitive lately? Perhaps you approached ...

5 Ways to be a Leader, Not a Manager

Have you ever wondered about the difference between a manager and a leader? ...

How to Shut Down a Colleague Who Takes Credit for Your Work

Has this ever happened to you? You’re in a meeting and the unthinkable ...

15 Songs for Your Leadership Playlist

It was one of those conference moments I’ll never forget: Carly Fiorina had ...

10 Killer Leadership Skills: The Great Differentiators?

Last week at Hallmark I hosted a couple gentlemen from a partner company. ...

6 Critical Missteps That Hurt Your Career Advancement

Let’s face it: it isn’t easy to break out and establish yourself as ...

Influencing Without Authority—Using Your Six Sources of Influence

I am in the difficult situation of being unofficial project lead, responsible for ...

4 Characteristics of Leaders Who Get Hired and Promoted

Imagine if you had the opportunity to sit down with a senior executive ...

Nine Qualities of Female Leaders Who Get Beyond the Glass Ceiling

I’m frequently asked to speak about women in law and specifically the issue ...

5 Things Women Leaders Should Stop Doing. TODAY.

Over the last couple years, I’ve had a front row seat to career ...

8 Types of Courage for Aspiring Leaders

“The truth is that courage resides within you; you must simply decide to ...

9 Traits of Exceptional Leaders

Truly great leaders are hard to come by, but it seems everyone thinks ...

How to Manage Former Peers

Let’s talk about a potentially awkward situation. You get a new role and ...

11 Leadership Lessons Learned

Here are 11 lessons I’ve learned about leadership—mostly from much-admired colleagues, and just ...

The Top 5 Most-Read Articles This Month
The Top 5 Most-Read Articles This Month

Are you curious what other emerging leaders have been reading at Be Leaderly.com? Here they

3 Acts of Career Courage
3 Acts of Career Courage

What was your first big, bold, act of courage? For Nithya Ruff, Senior Director, Open

Moving From People-Pleaser to Robust Leader
Moving From People-Pleaser to Robust Leader

Being nice is good for business – until it’s not. You may think that being

Leaderly Quote: Getting to yes
Leaderly Quote: Getting to yes

A large part of a leader’s job is getting people to say “yes.” In a

Emerging Leader Spotlight: Rebekah Kofo-Kasumu
Emerging Leader Spotlight: Rebekah Kofo-Kasumu

Every month we ask an emerging leader we admire to share what she is doing

Feeling Overwhelmed by Work? Go Back to Basics
Feeling Overwhelmed by Work? Go Back to Basics

According to recent conversations I’ve had with both emerging and senior leaders, 2017 has (already!) been

Leaderly Quote: Dreams don’t work unless you do
Leaderly Quote: Dreams don’t work unless you do

I asked Angie Klein, Be Leaderly’s operations and marketing manager, what her all-time favorite leadership

Be Bold For Change: 10 Ways To Champion Women’s Advancement
Be Bold For Change: 10 Ways To Champion Women’s Advancement

International Women’s Day is kindof a big deal for us. At Be Leaderly, we try

12 Leadership Quotes by Emerging Women Leaders for International Women’s Day
12 Leadership Quotes by Emerging Women Leaders for International Women’s Day

On March 8th, International Women’s Day, we can’t think of a better way to celebrate

Leaderly Quote: Don’t wait for opportunities…
Leaderly Quote: Don’t wait for opportunities…

“Opportunities are yours to create, not gifts from a boss or your company,” says Liz

Dealing With Difficult People: The One Thing You Need to Know
Dealing With Difficult People: The One Thing You Need to Know

No matter how long you’ve been in post, the challenges of a tough team member

Leaderly Quote: My one criteria for taking on a mentee…
Leaderly Quote: My one criteria for taking on a mentee…

When it comes to being a mentor, Nehal Mehta sets boundaries in this role by

The Top 5 Most-Read Articles This Month
The Top 5 Most-Read Articles This Month

Here are the top articles that other emerging leaders have been reading at BeLeaderly.com this

You Don’t Have to be an Expert to Share Your Expertise
You Don’t Have to be an Expert to Share Your Expertise

Feeling that you’re not “senior enough” to give a presentation at an event? Well, chances

At Be Leaderly, our mission is a simple one: To provide proven career strategies that help you lead, climb, and thrive as a rising woman of influence. If you’re ready to lead, we’re here to support and inspire you.

Subscribe

captcha

PRIVACY

We will never share, rent, or sell your personal information or email address.
Copyright 2017, Be Leaderly