Thursday 29 September 2016

'A wise man once said: management is doing things right, leadership is doing the right things...'

Patrick Sassidy CEO, United Hardware

Published 10/07/2016 | 02:30

Patrick Cassidy of United Hardware
Patrick Cassidy of United Hardware

A wise man once said that while "management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things". Sometimes it can be difficult to distinguish between the two - and as a young manager 20 years ago I often found myself in a painful dilemma, incessantly deliberating over the best course of action.

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For me personally the solution came with age and experience. The world continues to change - politically, economically, socially, and technologically - dramatically changing the societies within which we live, and ultimately the way in which business leaders must manage businesses.

As I see it, there are three critical steps to making the right decision in business.

Firstly, travel abroad and get as much foreign life and work experience as possible. It's hugely important that tomorrow's leaders get a view of the world's business environment so that they can decide which practices best suit their own companies.

We're a small island and business practices abroad are often superior to those at home. From my perspective, life experience trumps qualifications every time.

Secondly, learn to step back from your situation and take time to consider your options. People often dive head-first into action without considering all the options, thus missing out on making the right decision. We all need time to get internal and external advice and consider the best course of action, while at the same time staying dynamic.

Finally, don't always follow the crowd. All of the world's great companies are pioneers in some shape or form. They are market leaders in at least one aspect of their business and they got there by fine-tuning the practices of their peers to the point where they are front-runners, be it in efficiency, product offering, brand marketing or any other practice that can help distinguish them from the pack.

As humans, we can all too often crave the approval of others, rather than shaping our own futures. It's important that we follow our gut instinct from time to time. So maybe we should take the road less travelled.

Sunday Indo Business

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