While we’re having Fun with Words Week here at Material Minds headquarters, I think we should look at the term ‘Executive.’ Much attention is paid to what the difference is between management and leadership. And in company ranks we have managers and leaders.
Fortunately, there is no confusion as to what we should call the people who manage as they are called management. But the leadership of an organization isn’t called that, they’re called Executives.
Frequently you hear an executive saying that their job is to lead and not manage as management is the purview of managers. But then if an executives job is leadership, what is leadership exactly?
That’s where I come down to the meaning of the word Executive. Look at it carefully and it comes from the word Execute. Yes, a CEO’s role is as the Chief Execute-ive Officer. It can’t be any clearer than that. An executive’s prime responsibility is to execute.
That’s why leadership is about setting strategy, inspiring people and executing. An executive who thinks the job ends at setting strategy and who leaves execution to management is not doing his job because the foundation of this job is to execute.