From my weekly article at WorldMag.com:
In recent years, authors like John Maxwell, Seth Godin, and Jim Collins have made leadership sexy, a thing to be pursued and desired. Where leadership books and seminars were once for those in positions of leadership they now function as road maps for the millions of aspiring bosses, entrepreneurs, and CEOs. Our society is obsessed with leading. That’s because we live in a society of people looking to put themselves ahead, to be recognized, to be influential. Leadership is prized and anything else ought to be nothing but a stepping-stone to it. In the process of over-inflating leadership we have deflated the importance of management.
A false dichotomy has been set up pitting leadership against management. Leaders are forward-thinking, entrepreneurial, inspirational, make-it-happen types. Managers are laggardly luddites who do little but meddle and muddle the direction of the leader. People thrive under leaders but wilt under management. Management harasses its minions about TPS reports and showing up for work five minutes late. Leadership casts a vision for greatness and everyone follows with vim and vigor. While this is certainly true in some organizations, it is a caricature, a depiction of the situation that emphasizes the worst and ignores the good.
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Read the full article HERE.