Leadership vs. Management

by Ben on May 25, 2009

What is the difference between Management and Leadership? This question has sparked much debate among business leaders, educators, and performance coaches over the last 10-15 years.

While the terms were once used interchangeably, the distinction between a leader and a manger has spread signficantly in today’s “New Era” of business.

The Role of a Manager in an Organization:

A manager is responsible for ensuring his organization’s policies, procedures, and values are understood and executed by all people under his direct supervision. 

If an organization’s policies, procedures, and values are clear enough, virtually anyone can be a manager. 

The Role of a Leader in an Organization:

A leader has the same responsiblities as a manager yet possesses an additional set of skills that a manager has yet to develop.  The inspire, motivate, and influence others within their organization to continually things safer and more efficiently.  Being good is never good enough for a leader. 

A good leader has an infectious passion for excellence and absolute commitment to the desired results of the team.  Some of the most important qualities of a leader are as follows:

  • Vision: A leader is always looking for improvement opportunities within every level of his organization. If the leader does not have the authority to act on an improvement opportunity, he seeks out someone who can.
  • Development: A leader develops his employees by rewarding them with increasing levels of responsibility as they become more competent, but he always remains accountable for the results.
  • Respect: The golden rule comes into account here, “treat others as you would expect to be treated”. Where leaders are selfless, managers are often selfish caring only about what is in it for them.
  • Trust: Trust is earned over time. Leaders eventually earn the trust of their team by sticking to their word, admitting when they have made a mistake, and being honest in their relationship with others.
  • Purpose: Leaders instill a sense of purpose in their subordinates by reinforcing the importance of their job as it relates to the organization. Having to do something just for the sake of doing it is never a productive use of anyone’s.

Anyone can be a manager, but it takes a person of integrity, insight, and motivation to be a leader.

Find out more details using Houston Info on improving your managerial skills.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

nosea January 25, 2010 at 3:52 am

this your website is much useful to us in my class to Myanmar students .
Kadu Burman

Ben January 30, 2010 at 9:37 am

Thanks nosea! Please let me know if I can help out in any way!

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