January-February 2021

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38 PalletCentral • January-February 2021 LEADERSHIP By Brad Wolff The Truth About LEADERSHIP & MANAGEMENT Managing without leading leaves your team without direction. L eadership and management are not the same things, even though people frequently lump them together. Being effective in one doesn't make you effective in the other. They are very different skills with each vital to the success of your firm. Few people are skilled and comfortable in all aspects of leadership and management. You can still be a highly successful if this is the case. The key is to be self-aware and self-honest so that you fill the gaps through other people and your own development. Other employees, advisors, and coaches can be critical to help you fill these gaps. If you deny or ignore your gaps, they're likely to offset your strengths, causing you to pay the price in lost revenue & profitability, high-turnover, and stress. Leadership is ultimately about impact and influence on people – both yourself and others. It answers the question, "where are we going and why?" It always starts with yourself since you can't lead others further than you can lead yourself. You can positively impact yourself and others via the following leadership functions: compelling purpose, vision, and modeling desired behaviors. When you do this well, you create the energy, enthusiasm, and optimism to accelerate you towards your desired future. A fundamental leadership principle is that your day-to-day actions matter more than anything else you do. What you say has value only if it matches what you do, such as, if you want people to follow through on their commitments, you need to do the same. If you want people to listen, you need to listen. Characteristics of Effective Leadership • Engage and inspire people about where you're going and why. Because highly engaged people produce superior results and positively impact others. • Set the example by "walking the talk" and not asking others to do what you wouldn't do yourself. Because you build trust and respect through integrity. Nobody respects hypocrisy. • Ask questions to understand and learn rather than assuming you know it all. Because you never

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