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The difference between a Director and a Leader

Posted 4 years ago in LEADERSHIP

The hats in your business are the departments.  There are 10 hats;

  1. Shareholder
  2. Director
  3. Leadership
  4. Product / Service Development
  5. Operations
  6. Marketing
  7. Sales
  8. Finance
  9. Admin/IT
  10. HR

Many owners of businesses wear multiple hats.  The secrets to success here is to understand what the differences are between the hats, what the responsibilities are and to make sure none of the hats is neglected.

So back to the question – what’s the difference between the Director hat and the Leader hat?

Director Hat Leader Hat
Maximises shareholder value Maximise business efficiency
Sets the plan Implements the plan
Governance responsibilities Leadership and Management responsibilities
Works ON the business Works IN the business
Mitigates risks and sets policy Implements policy
Strategic focus (big picture) Operational focus (make it happen)
Establish business model and structure Implement model and manage performance
No Accountability line to team (apart from to Leader) Holds team to account

Getting your structure right is the next most important component of business success after developing your strategy.  After all it is your people who must be engaged in your plan for it to become a reality.  Knowing the difference between the Director Hat and the Leadership Hat is also fundamental.  The Directors set the plan and the Leader engages and empowers the team to deliver on that plan.

If there’s a way to do it better … find it

– Thomas A. Edison

Questions to ask yourself.

  1. How well am I living into the Director Hat?
  2. What three things could I do better as a Leader?
  3. What support do I need to lift my business performance to the next level?


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