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At many companies, leadership positions are often thought of as being the same as management roles. Project heads, senior managers, chief executives – these people are all expected to lead those around them to accomplish common business goals and push company initiatives forward.

However, leadership and management do not necessarily need to be intertwined. Managers are not always effective leaders – companies using promote from within strategies often see this scenario, as people who are hired for one job may be promoted to another for which they may not necessarily have the right skill set. Conversely, there are also employees who are not managers but may take up leadership roles – perhaps they are the ones who motivate coworkers to finish projects or spearhead efforts to get things done.

The fact of the matter is that a business can never have too few leaders. Just because management is arranged in a pyramid-like hierarchy does not mean leaders have to conform proportionally. Yet that is often a problem that many organizations face, with some firms even suggesting their existing management is not effective at leading people, let alone the rest of the firm. If anything, this just means that enterprises must spend more time cultivating leadership structure than they do on management structure.

"Growing a team of leaders isn't far-fetched," explained Business 2 Community contributor Raj Sheth. "It should be the goal of those in higher management positions to not only lead the company, but also inspire their team to grow on their own terms. There is a movement brewing in employers' philosophies. The idea rests upon a management style that is, well, manager-less. It is a leadership platform where employees have the opportunities to grow their own leadership skills in a horizontal environment."

Autonomy – the great motivator
One of the biggest fears that many businesses have when it comes to management is that without people in these key roles, companies will fail to be productive. However, if organizations foster leaders who can work independently, it can actually be a motivational force that may improve productivity. When people lead each other, they feel empowered and compelled to hold up their end of the bargain. It is more a carrot and stick model instead of the conventional management driving forward movement.

That is not to say that management is not important – for many businesses, active, involved managers play a pivotal role. However, when every worker is fostered as a leader, it can create an empowered business where every employee is capable of stepping up and getting things done. They will not need to rely on management, they can motivate each other.

At the end of the day, the takeaway is that leadership is important for everyone in the company, not just management. A company of leaders is one that can be self-motivated and thrive in the long haul while also improving business relationships.