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How the #Coronavirus pandemic is separating leaders and managers and why it's not a bad thing


By now, if you've not heard of "Coronavirus" then let me address this blog more appropriately, "Hello - welcome to Earth." Everyone - everywhere - has been affected by this global pandemic. With something so prolific, it starts to quickly weed out who are our leaders and who are our managers. And we need that, trust me.


1. What is the difference?


Leaders take a crisis situation and find the proactive steps so the team keeps moving forward. Managers take the response to the crisis situation and react to the situation. Proactive versus reactive are important to differentiate - and quite honestly, we need both.


2. What is the construct of proactive behaviors?


Taking into account that every crisis, even the 'Rona, has a beginning, a middle, and an end. We basically went from a space and place in time with stability in our lives and in the market (ok - mostly) to pretty much pure chaos. (I mean - the last time for many of us where we shut down America would be 9/11, so this is chaos at a global proportion.)


Leaders take action in these times by proactively looking at this time as an opportunity. An opportunity to change, to grow, to foster, to communicate, to connect, to find solutions. Leaders proactively do the work to make sure others feel safe.


3. What is the construct of reactive behaviors?


Leadership is not for everyone and to that point - we do need managers. In those moments where emotions are running high, uncertainty is palatable, fear of the unknown is very real - - we need those individuals who can react to those concerns.


What we must be cognizant of, though, is not to confuse the two.


Leaders will rise to the occasion but many times can fizzle out after an event has happened. Mostly because they burn out and go back to managing.


Leading can be very sexy and very focused and very political and very public. Managers are oftentimes behind the scenes dealing with the in-the-moment needs.


PERSON OF ACTION: Look at your business - at yourself. Are you a leader or a manager? Who is proactively innovating and who is reactively managing? Are people in the right roles within your business? What about at home? Leader or manager - we need both. Make sure you know where you are today.


Warrior on -

Sheryl Hickerson



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