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Ian Prince

Sig, great post, can totally relate. Isn't play more fun and rewarding than command and control!

Not to mention slapping, ouch :-(

niclaquesnifessees.org is a great resource for French-speaking parents in this respect.



nice post Sig!

John Seiffer - Business Coach

Your distinction between "somebody they respect showing the way" and "command and control" is a useful one. However, it's not the distinction between leadership and management. It's the distinction between two styles. Either style can be applied to leadership OR management.

Leadership is nothing more than getting a person (or group) to follow you. It can be done with respect or by command and it is useful, maybe even necessary to some degree, but highly overrated in business.

True management, on the other hand is the hard work of developing an environment that supports people to be successful in a common goal. This can not usually be done from the bottom up but neither can it be done entirely from the top down.



kind of respectfully disagree there (as long as we talk living beings):

- Managing is by holding hand or using whip (managere - horse dressage).
- Lead on the other hand is to walk up front and show the way.

Is a shepherd "leading" the flock? I'd rather say he'll be walking at the tail end of it whistling at his dog. The sheep would not "follow" the leader.

Of course, semantics comes in play as one sometimes talks about "respect" for the one who wields the whip, but I'd rather use "fear" there. Ditto for follower; non-fear respect can induce people to follow as in freely follow. But I would not call somebody a "follower" if induced by fear.

Thus I would not talk about somebody "following you" in the sense of command & control, rather somebody who's practical and finds doing as ordered the lesser pain.

I do agree with your last paragraph - "prepare the environment" (as Maria Montessori would have said) is the basis, clear goals and values the rest thus not all top down. But organising the environment equals managing the environment, not the people.

Actually, I think managing people and leading people are mutually exclusive as command and control ruins the respect needed for leading... :)


John, see you picked up on this in your blog (but alas, no comments open there!).

Noted one sentence there - "But just leading people will not develop a scalable organization."

And to that I agree, and my fault that I'm forgetting a most important part: Organisational hierarchies, the current only deliverer of the Business Model (how to use resources etc.) is command & control by design and thus requires managing.

The thing is that I question the value over time of that model - organisational hierarchy as resources use structure - as it is rather not perfect nor do I think it's naturally befitting humans.

Leading to the question - what alternative is there? Well, not much directly interchangeable today, but many forces are moving in the direction - flat organisations, social media, etc. and myself with what we do. Time will show how it all pans out. One day etc.

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