Leadership is Necessary

The Chamber of SW Florida had a one-day retreat yesterday.  There were many topics discussed, and I would like to talk about one of them.

The idea of leadership came up, specifically, the need for people to be trained and to be coached in developing their leadership skills.  I’m not talking about the owner or the CEO of a company.  I’m talking about mid-level managers, foremen and supervisors.  When a manager has really great leadership skills, those skills translate to value at a company.  Conversely, when a manager has poor leadership skills, the company will be damaged.

Our retreat day was divided into two groups – those that work at larger companies and those that work at more entrepreneurial companies.  Every one of the larger company board members has spent countless hours in leadership training sometimes at great cost to the company.  Just the opposite was true with the entrepreneurial companies as there was no leadership training offered up to the staff.  My belief is the larger companies have both the budget and the insights to send staff to leadership training.  The entrepreneurs don’t have those same insights.

It’s easy for the business owner to say “I don’t have time” or “I can’t afford leadership training.”  I would like to challenge that thought process.  Let’s compare a good manager (leader) to a poor manager (leader).

  Good manager Poor manager
Hiring The good manager is less worried about his own position.  He wants to hire someone better than he is, not someone that is a ‘yes’ man. The poor manager is insecure and selfish.  He will hire someone that does anything he asks.  He would hire a sub-par person because then there is no threat.


Training A good manager understands the value of training – making sure his staff understands his or her duties and has the tools to perform them.  When a mistake is made, the manager sees this as an opportunity to improve the staff members’ skills.


A poor manager tells his staff to “do it this way.”  He does not explain the goals and spends no time in training the staff.  When a mistake is made, he berates the person.
Staff Retention A good manager will keep good staff longer because there is more development of that person.  And he will fire staff that does not make the grade.  This creates a much better working environment. People don’t typically quit companies, they quit bosses.  The good people leave because they can find a better boss.  The bad people stay because they haven’t been fired.

These are just examples of the differences between good bosses and bad bosses.  The list can be much longer.  The results to a company that has good managers is increased profits…increased through less recruitment costs, less training costs and increased productivity.

My recommendation to my entrepreneurial companies is spend money in teaching your good managers to be better leaders.  It will make your company much stronger and much more profitable.

photo credit: Teamwork and team spirit via photopin (license)

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