The first big mistake I made as a leader was to fail to ask what mistakes I was making.
I was curious what Ron Potter, my friend and the president of Team Leadership Culture, would say are the top three mistakes most leaders make. After all, he has spent the last twelve years of his professional life consulting with top leaders of national and international organizations helping them recognize and correct their mistakes.
1. Managing instead of leading.
Ron didn't even have to think about the first mistake. "Managing has more to do with directing day-to-day tasks, whereas leading has more to do with casting a vision, goal setting, and motivation," he said.
When a leader spends more time managing than leading, morale suffers among the troops. Most people would prefer a goal to shoot for and some freedom to figure out how to reach that goal. "We all crave at least a partial sense of control," Ron said.
In a study several years ago, two teams of leaders were given a difficult problem to solve. ...1