Entrepreneurial Growth Learning Module A

Understanding Leadership Process – Casey

Peter Drucker expressed his thoughts on leadership when he said “management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” Bill Gates suggests that “as we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” Leadership, as defined by the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, is defined as the power or ability to lead other people.  What does leadership mean to you?

To be a leader, one does not have to hold the top senior title or be in the higher ranks of company hierarchies.  When discussing a company’s leadership and only refer to the senior most executives in the organization is a misconception, they are just that, senior executives.  Institutionalized positions of power does not designate one a leader. As we are starting to see, the idea of having one

When one hears the word leader, what comes to mind?  Most people think of a domineering, take-charge charismatic individual. However, leadership has little to do with personal attributes. Leaders are not required to be extroverted charismatic individuals and often times true leaders know when to step back and empower others.

As mentioned above, Peter Druker expressed his idea that managing and leading are not the same.  Management tends to refer to a role one needs to fulfill in regards to create and implement action plan, measure, monitor, coordinate, solve, hire, fire, and so many other things. This is not to say a manager can not be a leader.  Managers manage things while leaders lead people.

Defining leadership, especially as it pertains to specific and unique work environments, is a challenging thing to do.  Companies are constantly evaluating and reevaluating what skills a leader should have and how to identify the right leaders for the right tasks.


Reward Systems

Reward programs in the work environment can result in multile different outcomes. Rewards help retain employees who stay with the company because they are committed, passionate and driven, which is a direct result of feeling appreciated by their employers. Reward programs also help boost employee productivity, idea generation and profits.  Studies confirm that workers are most motivated when reward systems are in place and they do not always require money as the incentive.  Below is a list compiled from Psychology Today’s list of different reward structures.

–       Compensation: Pay provided by an employer to an employee for services rendered (i.e. time, effort and skill). Includes both fixed and variable pay tied to levels of performance.

–       Benefits: Programs an employer uses to supplement the cash compensation that employees receive. These health, income protection, savings and retirement programs provide security for employees and their families.

–       Work Life: A specific set of organizational practices, policies and programs, plus a philosophy, that actively supports efforts to help employees achieve success at both work and home.

–       Performance:  The alignment of organizational, team and individual efforts toward the achievement of business goals and organizational success. It includes establishing expectations, skill demonstration, assessment, feedback and continuous improvement.

–       Recognition: Acknowledges or gives special attention to employee actions, efforts, behavior or performance. It meets an intrinsic psychological need for appreciation of one’s efforts and can support business strategy by reinforcing certain behaviors (e.g., extraordinary accomplishments) that contribute to organizational success. Whether formal or informal, recognition programs acknowledge employee contributions immediately after the fact, usually without predetermined goals or performance levels that the employee is expected to achieve. Awards can be cash or noncash (e.g., verbal recognition, trophies, certificates, plaques, dinners, tickets, etc.)

–       Development: A set of learning experiences designed to enhance employees’ applied skills and competencies. Development engages employees to perform better and engages leaders to advance their organizations’ people strategies.

–       Career Opportunities:  Involve the plan for employees to advance their career goals. May include advancement into a more responsible position in an organization. The company supports career opportunities internally so that talented employees are deployed in positions that enable them to deliver their greatest value to the organization.

Speak Your Mind