This is a guest post by Dora Houston. Dora is currently working as an essay-writing specialist at bestdissertation.com, which is an online platform for getting best dissertations and other writing assistance. I am also providing aid to students on career possibilities and other academic success related topics. Besides, I enjoy writing about current trends and innovations in education, technology, motivation and traveling.
The questions that linger in my mind are, “Are all managers’ leaders?” and “Are all leaders Managers?” Managers deal with the planning, organizing, directing, hiring and coordination of activities in an organization. A leader on the other hand is one with a vision which is communicated to followers and will positively influence. The use of targets so as to achieve a specific goal or goals is it a motivating factor. Mostly managers will use targets but a leader will positively energize and motivate the followers so that they can meet the specific goal. When motivation is pegged to targets its intimidating which means then those employees will deliver for the fear of repercussion. On the other hand, a leader will increase productivity by motivating followers with a vision that relates to their own success making followers want to freely work towards the vision.
Where there is a leader, there are followers meaning that followers tend to observe what their leader does and emulate. Managers tend to use their title to get things done but a leader needs to be at the forefront and be hands on. This reminds me of a day I was in queuing in the banking hall to get my debit card renewed and there is a power glitch in the specific building. This resulted to some tension within the bank because it caused some delay which we could not understand. At that point, the bank manager came to where customers were queuing and started explaining the issue as well as trying to solve problems that may not necessarily require the use of the system. That’s my point; a leader must show the followers how to deal with issues and other challenges that come up time and time again. The follower feels the need to take up responsibility as the leader is doing. If the manager lacked leadership skills he would have been at the employees asking why this and that is not being done which forces employees to accomplish the task under duress which will result to less productivity.
Organizations with high productivity learnt that communication was the way to identify the weak links in their business. Great ideas, innovation and efficiency are tapped in environs that encourage communication. Companies like Apple have ensured to adopt good communication policies which allow the company to collect information from the market as well as from employees themselves. This is how such a company’s productivity and success has been established. Therefore, a leader must encourage communication at all levels of communication with the agenda of improving productivity and ultimately the success of the company.
A leader must be a good listener too. I recall when I was at my second job where I had worked for four years I wanted to seek time off in order to take care of my mom. She had discs slip on her backbone and it meant she needed intensive care. I was stranded because I needed the job as well as I needed my mother from a home four children and a father deceased, my income was vital. Interestingly my immediate boss realized I look distressed and actually asked what was wrong. When I discussed my dilemma he actually was empathetic and decided that I can work from home and a visit to the office every Friday and Saturday mornings for meetings for three months. The solution worked so well and I delivered all that needed to be delivered just like I was reporting to the office. This taught me a leader in an organization should learn to listen to words as well as the non verbal communication of the followers. In an event my boss had not listened to my non verbal probably I would have stuck in the office with minimal productivity.
In addition for increased productivity, the leader must be a problem solver and not expect the followers to have all solutions. From the case above you realize that not only did my boss listen effectively to my issue but also provided a win-win solution for the organization and the to me. By so doing the productivity of the company was not affected and still maintained me as one of his followers.
Hence for improved and high productivity, a leader must adopt the strategies of effectively listening to employees, assisting in problem solving as employees or followers may not always have the answers with them. Also a leader should energize their team so that they have the motivation to be productive and finally a leader needs to adapt to valuing what the employees have to offer so that they do not feel demoralized which will affect the level of production for an organization.