By George Obst, Certified SCORE Mentor

Entrepreneurs need to have both leadership and management skill sets.

Each skill contributes in unique and different ways to the success of the organization.  Although there is some overlap between the two, the important thing is to understand the difference and the need for both.

In your leadership role you cast the vision for the organization. You are the key to defining  the mission  and the organization’s values. The leader brings the vision to reality.

In your management role, you organize the work and measure the results. You set specific goals and gauge effectiveness in achieving the goals.
Both the leadership and management combination are essential to the success of the organization.

Below are a few of ways of looking at the different roles of the leader and manager, depending on which hat the entrepreneur wears:

  1. Leaders focus on the future – managers focus on systems and procedures.
  2. Leaders originate – managers initiate.
  3. Leaders challenge the status quo – managers accept the status quo.
  4. Leaders view the horizon – managers watch the financial statements.
  5. Leaders ask, “what and why?” – managers ask “how and when?”.

This boils down to leaders innovating and managers administering.

To achieve success in either a start-up enterprise or an existing organization, both effective leadership and management skills are essential.  The question is, ”can you accomplish both roles?”

Every entrepreneur should assess their strengths and development needs, as well as their likes and dislikes in applying both leadership and management skills. The success of the organization is determined by the effective implementation of both sets of skills. Keep in mind an entrepreneur should hire staff, if necessary to ensure quality leadership and management. The other alternative is for the entrepreneur to learn the necessary skills needed to optimize organization results.

SCORE can help you identify your personal development needs to improve results for your business ideas and/or organization. SCORE has more than 70 certified mentors, skilled in most business applications, who will meet with you, at no cost, as often as you feel necessary. Call 603-745-7250 or click here to make your appointment with a SCORE mentor today.

About the Author:

George Obst is a former Certified SCORE mentor with more than 30 years experience profitably managing and growing businesses, including start-ups, purchasing, financing and selling businesses.

Entrepreneurs, Which Hat Do You Wear?