The distinction between a manager and a leader can go far beyond its teaching, opening the door for a new discussion on when to be either role. As part of Las Vegas Sands’ commitment to its Team Members and their advancement in the hospitality industry, Sands Academy conducted a “Leadership Fundamentals” course as another installment of their Elevate Series, a training program designed for Managers and Supervisors.
By definition, a manager is a person who conducts business or authority or household affairs. A leader is a person who has command or influence. Some of the stark distinctions between a manager and a leader is based on value and vision. A manager has objectives, but a leader has vision. While a manager may fix a problem, a leader may see it more as an opportunity or learning experience. Managers tell and sell, but leaders ask and listen.
“These leaders get polished, get support from those around them,” Sylein Burgos, Manager of Talent, Human Resources Training & Development said on the importance having a great team or mentor for support. “That person is a great leader because they provide us with the history from those before.”
During the class, Team Members were prompted with an exercise to name a great leader in world history, listing Franklin D. Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Napoleon Bonaparte. While the leaders were skilled in areas of communication, integrity, and strategy—Team Members all agreed that their different skillsets led them to a memorable leadership.
“This course allowed me to look back over management styles and rethink how you look at some of them,” Darnell Mays, Manager of Enterprise Analytics, who was recently promoted, said. “The exercise on values showed me that you can lump multiple characteristics together and make one solid value, and letting any decision, challenge or new ideas be reflective of that.”
Even though Mays has held previous leadership positions in the military and college, he also took the course because he wanted to understand how to be a better leader in a corporate setting. By way of example, Mays wants to pass down the kind of leadership he was shown to his own employees.
“I see gaining skills as a way to better help my team and whatever I can do to do that, I will do that,” he said.