A Leader Vs A Manager: Who will the people pick?

I'm sure the HR experts would have their own memes or infographics about the detailed differences of a leader and a manager. But here is my take.

- good communicator
- organised
- team player
- trains the team and helps each member understand the guidelines, the rules, the tasks
- prepares the tasks to be done
- prepares the schedules and deadlines
- great presentation
- liaises with the entire supply chain to ensure delivery of the product/service
- has empathy
- smart, can recognise patterns, can read data
- has experience - breadth of knowledge, versatile
- good memory, if not outstanding
- works hard
- can negotiate
- promotes well-being of the team
- promotes sustainability and constant improvement

This is a great person and an ideal member of a company, business or any organisation.

But this person may or may not be a leader.

I observe the MOST successful leaders worldwide -- famous names in the IT industry, in politics, non-profits, arts, in business and in history.  Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Welch, Mother Theresa, Alexander the Great, Voltaire, Aristotle, Narayana Murthy, and my recent favourite Elon Musk

Let me enumerate how I see these LEADERs:
- they have VISION
- they are headstrong
- they have very dominating personalities
- they can be erratic
- they are not afraid to ruffle feathers
- most of them are rather *my way or the highway*
- they fail over and over again and they still push for their dreams
- they are relentless
- they are DISRUPTORS
- they challenge the status quo
- they break the systems
- they build new markets
- they go where nobody has been before
- their passion for their work is relentless and unending. There is no breakfast, lunch or sleep time. They can be consumed with what they are doing for hours.
- They are mostly NOT *people* persons
- They are NOT afraid to be wrong
- they inspire generations
- they have an unsatiable thirst for new knowledge

So while a manager is smart, a leader is brilliant.

While a manager's actions and projects can be sustainable, these projects have way less impact. And most likely, not very revolutionary. However a leader's potentially high impact solution may lose fire if its market is not ready.

So what is the missing link? I suggest it is deep understanding of philosophy, critical thinking and self-awareness.  A leader needs these elements to sustain himself or herself in challenging situations. Self-awareness brings consistency in actions and integrity. Deep understanding of philosophy and critical thinking would enable a leader to do what is objectively right.

Will Wanganui elect leaders or managers? It would be great to see both types be represented.


Election Means an Opportunity

The election for Mayor and councillors is a few months away and my Facebook feed is already laden with advertisements and posts of people who are running, of issues that are pending and public sentiments of the smelly controversy of the Wanganui wastewater plant.

So I feel compelled to write a post about politics on this business blog, after all business, as much as it wants to stay independent of politics, usually has to dance with it to succeed.

There are many business owners in Wanganui who have closed doors, especially along the Main Street. Everyone knows and talks about it. This post is for those who ventured to start new businesses in Wanganui, those who keep on trying and those who may want to try again.

Small business is incredibly hard. Small business in a depopulating town is close to impossible. I see business owners approaching me for ideas on how to propel their sales online. I see business owners get overwhelmed with online marketing, make expensive moves, some misdirected, some apprehensive. These business owners appreciate that we are living in the digital age. This clearly presents an opportunity. Thus they keep trying.

That's the thing, they keep trying. Because that is the only way to make things happen. This is what I want to advocate. The coming elections present an opportunity to the public to elect officials who can organise and build a city that supports business ventures and intellectual development.

I stress intellectual development because I do not want to promote a lot of *action* and movement like a headless chicken crossing the road.  A popular business saying: Activity is not equal to productivity.

The core requirement is a sound strategy with deep ethical foundations. The successful execution of a great growth strategy is motivated by fundamental values of a city, similar to the fundamental values of a company/business. I have seen many businesses fall apart even when they started strong because the fundamental values of the leader is flawed. I have seen many business owners start with *good intentions* and fail because the drivers of their behaviours were based on fear and conflicted values.

Hence I suggest to the public the following qualities of a true leader:
1. Forward thinking
2. Integrity - a clarity of values, a clarity of thinking
3. Well-versed, has world experience, has technical experience - all skills that will help him or her to create reasonable strategies
4. Objectivity
5. Respect for reason
6. Understanding of the real motivations of people, Empathy
7. Foresight of what people in general need even if they do not know about it yet
8. Critical thinking

The election presents an astonishing opportunity for Wanganui - an extremely beautiful town in New Zealand with the most affordable living and property.

We need to challenge our minds. Let's not shut down debate. Let's be open to ideas, to other ways of thinking.  Let us demand more from the people who want to lead us.

We work so hard every day, in the most difficult times and most unforgiving situations. But our duty as fully-functioning humans does not stop there. Our duty is to develop our minds and maximise our mental capacity.  I encourage everyone to push the limits. This is our legacy.

Leah VillanuevaDeguzman
a business owner who helps people infiltrate the internet

I Miss Wanganui's Quirky Cafes

This blog was started more than 6 years ago, primarily to talk about the cafes I loved in Wanganui and my life in Wanganui.

I'm now living part-time in Palmerston North and after 3 months, I can say, I actually miss Wanganui's cafes!

Just last week, I visited the Recaffeinate Cafe on Taupo Quay as I was waiting for a meeting with some local business owners. It was a chilly morning and I had to have a shot of espresso.  I was so surprised at the *feel* of this cafe. It reminded me of the little alley cafes I saw in Chicago. It was cosy, friendly and it felt just *just right*. Works of local artists were featured on the walls. Dim lighting, table lamps, good coffee and stools in front of the windows make the scene. I loved it. It gives that feel of a business cafe.

Just 3 minutes walk away is the Mud Ducks cafe - clearly this is truly a tourist cafe, boasting beautiful views of the river. It has a sun area, a tourist center next to it, and it's a feature destination for those who visit the Saturday Market. This is a trendy place to visit.

Along the Victoria Avenue, my favourite is the Big Orange cafe from day 1. Six years on, the coffee is as good. All over New Zealand, Big Orange is THE ONLY cafe offering the best cafe mocha blend. No idea how they do it... but all the other cafe mochas in all other cafes I go to in Auckland and Wellington are either too sweet, too much milk, and just not as rich... but to be fair, there's this cafe mocha at Patagonia cafe in Queenstown I frequented when I lived there. Then again even if Patagonia has this rich chocolatey cafe mocha, it's priced at $5.5 or maybe $6 now and that of Big Orange is just $4. Big Orange is of course more than just a cafe mocha favourite. It has amazing breakfast options as well.  I heard they serve nice, classy dinners but I haven't tried.

Victoria avenue now boasts Momiji - a Japanese takeaway store... just in front of Element Cafe - another cafe which is worth the visit...

Ambrossia is a quirky cafe that also sells wonderful delicacies and cheeses. It has a beautiful, creative interior as well.

In the suburbs, 3 cafes are worth the mention: Springvale cafe, Windemere Strawberry Farms Cafe and Funky Duck Cafe in St. John's Hill.

These are just a few of the many cafes in Wanganui... and I hope it inspires people to visit the city.

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Wanganui Self Storage - Affordable Secure Storage Solution

If you need more space because of your growing family, moving house or renovating, Store More Storage Wanganui offers the most affordable, easy self storage solutions.

For 3m x 3m - $30 per week, you'll have safe, secure space storage - a flexible solution.

Store More Storage is professionally managed. Store More Wanganui has storage solutions for residential and business users.

Call: 06 345 7548
Visit website: http://storemore.co.nz/ for pricing details.

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List of Great Cafes in Wanganui

Here's a list of the best cafes in Wanganui for 2014! 

Criteria: Value for Money, Location, Taste of Coffee, Menu, Ambience and most importantly Customer Service

1/2. Big Orange Cafe - Great coffee - great music. Iconic cafe to visit in Wanganui. Must-try - mochaccino

1/2. Springvale Cafe - only missing out on the #1 spot because of it's non-central location. But its own location has its own charm! So Springvale Cafe is tied with Big Orange as far as I can tell, really! This one is a family cafe and a local favorite. No wifi here but their menu is very impressive. Everything just tastes good! The price is also very affordable. No wonder they are finalists in being one of the best cafes in the Lower North Island in 2014!
Award-winning Quinoa porridge from Springvale Cafe - must-try
3. Mud Ducks Cafe - great location, great food selection!  Close to the river

4/5 Tie Element Cafe and Mint Cafe
6/7 Tie Columbia Cafe and Red Eye cafe - available free wifi and both cafes are conveniently located to the grocery and shopping center (Columbia) and city center offices (Red Eye). Just to clarify, Columbia cafe is next to Warehouse so you can use free wifi as long as you sign up for their newsletter.

There are close to 40 cafes in Wanganui! Just visit Google Maps and you'll see about 20 of them within a 3 km radius!

Cafe business is booming in Wanganui! If you'd like to start a business in Wanganui, talk to the experts!

To create a great business, you'd need to start with great partners who let you focus on your skill while they focus on your numbers. Sewell & Wilson Ltd is a three director firm of Chartered Accountants, the origin of which dates back to 1919. They have been managing accounts for successful businesses all over New Zealand since.

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Business News in Wanganui

This is a collection of positive business news in Wanganui. 

Story of Great Opportunity

"Profits and earnings are going well, which is important not only for shareholders but the residents as well. They don't want to come to a retirement village that's losing money. They want to be in one that's financially stable and has good capital backing, that way you know if something breaks it'll be fixed." - Summerset in the River City news

Wanganui as reasonable and affordable choice for a sustainable business

"We came to Wanganui by choice and it's the best decision we made. We have no intention of leaving and look forward to the city's continued growth and prosperity," Sara Owen Carbon Brush Wanganui news

Story of Fashion and Style

"There's a lot going for Wanganui and we'll never leave here. People like nice things at affordable prices and if you're good at marketing the business will succeed."  Jane Hayman, Posh Comfort,  Wanganui news

To create a great business, you'd need to start with great partners who let you focus on your skill while they focus on your numbers.

Sewell & Wilson Ltd is a three director firm of Chartered Accountants, the origin of which dates back to 1919.

Sewell & Wilson was formed in 1961 when Dick Sewell and Angus Wilson, fathers of Michael Sewell and Douglas Wilson, left Haworth, Sewell & Christie to practice together.  In 1979 Douglas joined Michael and his father in the partnership.  Angus retired in 1987.  The company was formed on 1 April 2006 when Douglas and Peter Redpath became directors, and Michael became a Consultant.  Michael retired in March 2011 and Glenn Spooner became a director in September 2012.

The strengths of Sewell & Wilson Ltd are in our quality of service and our experience.

Wanganui Chartered Accountants

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