Efficient Management vs. Effective Leadership

In most leadership books, you are told that you need to be both in order to be successful.

That you need to be both, effective and efficient.

Except, when given a choice, we’re likely to choose one over the other.

In definition, effective is producing the intended or expected results.

While, efficient is performing the best results in the least about of time and/or effort.

In other words, being effective is doing the right things and being efficient is doing things right.

Doing the right things isn’t enough anymore. Nor is just doing things right – Laura Stack

Therefore, if someone is expected to be both, then it’s about doing the right things, right.

Although, both “lenses” encompass a different mindset.

Those that align with being effective are impact-oriented, strategic, and relational.

An effective leader focuses on productivity in various layers such as motivation, teamwork, communication and objectives.

They encourage innovation and creativity to reach a desired goal.

Those who are efficient are task-oriented, impulsive, and project focused.

An efficient manager is one who uses limited resources to get the job done in a more professional manner; They want immediate results. Efficiency avoids mistakes and likes to take repeated steps to achieve a goal.

Both efficiency and effectiveness are desirable characteristics in business.

Although, one is often attainable only at the expense of the other. While some do a good job of balancing the two, others view one lens more than the other.

Depending on the situation, both efficiency and effectiveness can be used, if managers and leaders work together.