Bringing the management and leadership together will create the best combination.

Recently I completed a leadership training session that communicated to be successful in a supervisor position one needs to be a manager and a leader. The manager is going to hold the employees accountable and set goals, while the leader is going to push the employee to reach beyond their goal. It spoke that while management is not a bad thing, leadership is not a great thing. Bringing the two together will create the best combination; it will push and inspire the employees.

When someone is 100% manager (called a Marcher), they have all the employees marching in a line. No one wants to march in that line but the manager holds the threat of their job over them so they march in the line. This manager has no buy in from their employees. None of the employees are following that person because they want to. These employees are not working their hardest or producing their best results, they are just doing what they are required to do.

When someone is 100% leader (called a Dreamer), they spend all their time on the low performers. They are investing in their employees but not spending any time managing their employees. These employees often aren't meeting goals because the leader has not given them clear goals. The leader is more worried with making connections with each employee versus accomplishing tasks. While the employees feel linked to their leader, they also are not producing their best results.

At the beginning of the training class, I automatically started thinking that the goal is always to be a good leader. We are trained early on that you want to be a leader, not a manager. But the more the instructor explained the more clear the subject became. To have a successful team, you have to be able to give them feedback on their performance while pushing them to improve their performance. It really makes perfect sense; the two abilities go hand in hand. By challenging employees to grow while holding them accountable they begin to push themselves to reach goals they didn't think were attainable. While at the same time, the employees are proud to be a member of your team.

I wish this class would have been part of my leadership training that I completed when I first became a manager. Maybe due to the years of experience I have gained, the class made more sense to me now than it would have then but I found it very insightful. I was fortunate enough to have an amazing mentor that showed me how to be a likable manager while being a great leader. It brings to mind a quote, "It matters not what someone is born, but what they grow to be."-Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. My mentor taught me to always strive to be a better person than I was the day before, to expect more from myself than other people do and to always continue to educate myself. He molded me into a pretty good manager, and all I can hope for is that I set the best example I can for every employee I lead so they too can strive to be better every day.

Alison Couey,



Leadership Butler Alumni, Class of 2007

For more information on this contact Becky Wolfe, Leadership Butler at