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Holy Family College Blog

Why Business Executives Need Leadership (Not Management) Skills

Posted By Dr. James Begotka On July 13, 2018

Work College Heysa Amy and Chadia 2-15-18In our ever-changing and competitive job market, the need for business professionals with practical and strategic leadership skills becomes more and more valuable — if not more and more necessary.

If pursuing a career in a competitive business landscape is your calling, “business as usual” will no longer suffice. As an aspiring business leader, you must consider pursuing an advanced business degree that focuses on the practical implementation of leadership skills rather than management knowledge.

Understanding the Difference Between Leaders and Managers

The terms leader and manager may seem interchangeable within professional settings, but the two roles, while complementary, actually are very different. According to a recent article in the Harvard Business Review (HBR), the key difference between managers and leaders is that managers control a group or setting to accomplish a specific goal while leaders enable others to move toward organizational success.

In short, leaders and managers have different goals and methodologies in mind as they work with colleagues. It is possible to be an efficient and practical manager with a great facility for moving specific tasks and projects forward. But for the manager, the focus is often on the task at hand and the path to execution, and not necessarily on the human dynamics, talents and needs of the people who make up his or her team.

Leaders, on the other hand, are focused on motivating the people around them to perform at the highest level of their ability and with the greatest sense of purpose and fulfillment. This emphasis on people translates to efficient, creative and collaborative solutions to projects or common problems.

The Growing Demand for Specialized Business Master’s Programs

In the last few years, an increasing number of business schools have seen increased enrollment in their specialized graduate business degrees. This shift from the traditional MBA has occurred in response to growing demand from industries for candidates with expertise in a discrete area of the business such as accounting, supply chain management or marketing, among others. Businesses are looking for candidates with specific skill sets that can translate into immediate value for the organization.

As part of this shift, companies are becoming more aware of the need for management-level positions that focus specifically on company vision and implementation through individual empowerment. The focus of these leadership positions is on the need to influence others and inspire them to succeed while keeping in mind larger organizational goals and priorities.

While strong leadership abilities can sometimes occur naturally, they also can be taught and developed in specialized business master’s degree.  A master’s degree in Leadership and Organizational Development (LOD) can offer students the chance to develop and implement strategies that sustain high levels of individual, team and organizational performance

A Master’s in Leadership and Organizational Development Can Enrich Your Life as a Whole

These skills are not just helpful at work, they also can enrich your personal goals and attitudes. In an article written for HBR, Stewart Friedman, an expert in Leadership Management, talks about how leadership skills learned in a professional setting can improve the quality of seemingly unrelated personal goals and domains.

Strategically evaluating several aspects of life and then creating plans for achieving change in those areas is a skill honed and crafted by good professional leadership skills. The confidence and knowledge gained from mastery in professional settings contributes to an individual’s overall confidence, understanding of self and ability to implement changes toward self-betterment.

HFC_EventRecap-thumb-1-1Studying Leadership and Organizational Development at Holy Family College

According to Paul Hersey, one of the theorists responsible for the leadership model explored and taught at Holy Family College, “This process [of creating good leaders] by its very nature cannot be revolutionary, but must be evolutionary; gradual development changes, a result of planned growth, and the creation of mutual trust and respect.”

These qualities are the main focus of the individual growth and study in the Masters of Science in Leadership and Organizational Development. This focus intertwines closely with industry standards laid out by the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM), Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) and the National Center for Healthcare Leadership (NCHL).

The Leadership and Organizational Development Program consists of 33 credits that emphasize business, data and relational theory, and its practical application. Because of the course adherence to the industry standards mentioned above, there are program emphasis options available in both “Health Care Leadership” and “Adult Learning.”

The learning outcomes of our program focus on students becoming well-rounded and emphasize effective personal strengths of leadership, the ability to analyze and evaluate complex company strategies, explore strategies of human resource management and develop collaborative skills that will translate to both personal and professional settings.

If you are looking for a dynamic master’s degree that has the potential to transform both your personal and professional lives, the master’s degree in Leadership and Organizational Development could be the perfect fit for you.

Download our Guide to Getting Your Master’s in Leadership and Organizational Development and learn about how you can become a leader and make a difference in your workplace.

Become a Leader Now


Topics: Business & Leadership, Graduate School

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