Management Vs Leadership

This industry seems to suffer from an overabundance of “managers” and a lack of “leaders” as managers. It seems any managers out there reading this might benefit from some field advice on the difference and why leadership works better than management on those of us pounding the pavement every day. Thoughts???

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My master’s leadership class had us read these books and they were really good. I highly recommend. John Maxwell: Developing the Leader Within You; John Maxwell: Developing the Leaders Around You, and James Hunter: The Servant


MANAGERS get excited when they tell you all about the "Facebook like "employee recognition system that ythe company pays for and in which you can give kudos to others and earn points and prizes with.

LEADERS actually take the time to give subordinates or peers a tangible kudos by phone ,email, text or perhaps even a lunch out.

MANAGERS tell you all about their dog.
LEADERS ask you how your dog is doing. (and they know you have a dog :slight_smile:


The problem is managers or team leaders in this industry have no training or people skills and BS upper management into promoting them because they are experts at hiding mental illness. My last team leader was previously a probation officer turned Investigator then BS’d it’s way to team leader, then BS’d it’s way to another management position. We were treated like inmates at a prison until it was promoted and we were all paroled. Free at last, free at last!! Whoever is hiring these things needs to be fired, but then again they BS’s their way into management too.


This person sounds like a manager. Rules focused and uninspiring in every way. “Team leader” does seem like a bad title for most of the ineffectual micro email/text managing administrators in this field. The beatings will continue when morale improves. I venture to say that maybe if we had more “leaders” in the field and less “managers” retention/hiring would not be as bad as it is. Peraton obviously has a serious retention/ hiring/experienced investigator problem when they are offerring 10K hiring bonuses for credentialed investigators.

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I wish Peraton would send that 10k to current employees.


Just thought of another one:

When you call a MANAGER to help you with a work issue …you can hear them actively typing an email to someone else in the background while they pretend to listen to you.

When you call a LEADER about the same issue you hear silence in the background and they ask follow up questions about your problem.

Doesn’t anyone else have good examples?


Instead of solving problems they say they’ll role it up and you never hear from them again. Or, our team (whatever the issue is team–stats team, coverage team) is working diligently on the problem and you never hear from them again. They’re too busy working suck up extra projects for upper management to actually help subordinates.

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Leadership and I’d even argue good management in the BI Industry doesn’t exist. Team Leads and Section Leads or Contract Liasons are straight up task masters and puppets to senior level management and program managers. Almost every single one of them will turn their back on an Investigator and not stand up for an Investigator nor will they listen. It’s all about self preservation to keep their salary and job even at the expense of the Investigator.

Never trust a Section Lead or Team Leader. They aren’t leaders. They are pawns to be used by senior management to keep you subjected to metrics that aren’t attainable without working off the clock.

I would never consider a job as a Team Lead or Section Lead. I would have no impact on my team or Investigators and I would be fired or let go because I’d stand up for my team and tell management above me what is attainable and what is not attainable. Nobody would be working off the clock and I would stress quality, quality, quality and not numbers.

This is national security after all. In many cases, you can’t have both quality and timeliness for ACD’s of seven days or less when it comes to providing a thorough background investigation. I wouldn’t last because my Investigators wouldn’t be producing the profits these companies want to churn out.

I blame the agencies for not allowing more time to conduct background investigations as a whole and I blame the vendors for not paying professional wages to most Investigators on most of these federal contracts. If Congress puts certain mandates on timeliness, then these agencies need to advise Congress what is reasonable and what isn’t reasonable pertaining to the time these Investigations require.


Leaders are held accountable. Manager escape, evade, and plead ignorance.

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Nailed it! The ignorant, innocent act is one of the most difficult to combat. I have 7 years of watching this operate like a fine tuned instrument. Probably learned this as a child, punch a sibling then act super sweet and innocent. Dear God what we’ve been put through.

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