What Is Leader & Manager?

Leader & Manager

Leaders challenge and Managers comply. - P.M.

Leaders and Managers traditionally are two quite diverse roles. Modern corporations and businesses require employees to showcase a variety of skills that perpetrate in both the leadership and the management aspect. Suddenly a powerful hybrid is born, especially when the employee aims high. With this brief article I focus on the clarification of the roles and not on the importance of one over the other.

(1) Leaders are unique, Managers usually copy.

Leaders are willing to be themselves. They are self-aware and work actively to build their unique and differentiated personal brand. Managers mimic the competencies and behaviors they learn from others and adopt their leadership style rather than defining it.

(2) Leaders create a vision, Managers create goals.

Leaders inspire and engage their people in turning a vision into reality, and activate people to be part of something bigger. They know that high-functioning teams can accomplish a lot more working together. Managers focus on setting, measuring, achieving goals, control situations and reach or exceed objectives.

(3) Leaders are change agents, Managers maintain the status quo.

Leaders have innovation as their mantra. They embrace change and know that even if things are working, there could be a better way forward. Managers stick with what works, refining systems, structures and processes to make them better.

(4) Leaders have followers, Managers have workers.

Leaders have followers become their raving fans and fervent promoters – helping them build their brand achieve their goals. Managers have staff who follow directions and seek to please the boss.

(5) Leaders are in for the long-term, Managers think short-term.

Leaders have intentionality. They do what they say they are going to do and stay motivated toward a big, often very distant goal. Managers work on shorter-term goals, seeking more regular acknowledgment or accolades.

(6) Leaders take risks, Managers control risk.

Leaders know that failure is often a step on the path to success. Managers work to minimize risk; and seek to avoid or control problems rather than embracing them.

(7) Leaders coach, Managers direct.

Leaders know that people who work for them have the answers or are able to find them. They see their people as competent and are optimistic about their potential. Managers assign tasks and provide guidance on how to accomplish them.

(8) Leaders build relationships, Μanagers build systems and processes.

Leaders focus on people. They know who their stakeholders are and spend most of their time with them. They build loyalty and trust by consistently delivering on their promise. Managers focus on the structures necessary to set and achieve goals. They focus on the analytical and ensure systems are in place to attain desired outcomes.

(9) Leaders grow personally, Μanagers rely on existing skills.

Leaders know if they are not learning something new every day, they are standing still and falling behind. They seek out people and information that will expand their thinking. Managers often double down on what made them successful, perfecting existing skills and adopting proven behaviors.

The world needs so many good Managers. The world needs so few good Leaders.

A Manager dreams to be a Leader. None Leader dreams to be a Manager. - P.M.

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