Mentoring Series: Part 2 - What Does a Leader Look Like and How Does a Leader Act?


In part 2 of this “3-Part Mentoring Blog Series,” we will identify and discuss the real and accurate attributes of a true leader. Leadership is a key component of the continued success of an individual community or organization, especially in the senior living industry. Let’s look at leadership as it applies to senior living either on an individual community level or the overall organization.

Whether you are working in senior living, or any other industry, leadership takes on very specific skills that differ from being a manager. Of course, being a manager is the “most likely" step in a person's career path that hopefully will help them to become a leader in an organization. However, being a leader holds a completely different set of values and understanding in order to be individually successful and accomplish success for your team or organization. In William Arruda’s article “9 Differences Between Being a Leader And A Manager,” he identifies there are 9 differences between leaders and managers.

Some of these differences include:

“Leaders create vision and managers create goals.” Show those within your organization a big picture of what is possible and help others to get to that vision.

“Leaders are change agents and managers maintain the status quo.” Innovation comes naturally to a leader, and they know that innovation will create waves. Managers are those who say, “This is the way we’ve always done things,” or they try to refine an already broken system.

A Leader’s personal growth is important while managers exist on their known skills. Continued education to learn new things means growth for a leader. If they are not learning new things, they are falling behind or staying stagnant. Managers look at what made them successful and perfect existing skills.

“Leaders build relationships, managers build systems and processes.” Leaders are well aware of who the stakeholders are that will help them realize their dream. They work to build trust and loyalty by delivering on their promise. Managers are setting and achieving goals.

Another author, John Maxwell, provides a roadmap to those wanting to sharpen their leadership skills in his book “The Complete101 Collection, What Every Leader Needs to Know.” Maxwell identifies that attitude can build up or tear down a team. A leader's attitude will determine when, and how effectively the team they oversee will move in a positive direction. A bad, short, or destructive attitude will most likely be the downfall of a project, department, or organization.

Leadership is a trait that requires work every day. To be a successful leader, you must have a plan to promote personal growth and education while helping others achieve their growth goals as well. Think before you act and always think about how you portray yourself to those who work with and for you. Are you a leader or a manager?

Let LW Consulting, Inc. work with your organization to improve the leadership skills of your team members.

In the final part of this Mentoring Blog Series, we will discuss, “Senior Living Leadership Must-Haves.”


Do you have questions about leadership in your community? 

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Topics: Leadership & Staffing