What is the difference between a leader and a manager?

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pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

While there is some overlap between these two, leaders and managers are different.  Leadership is a more creative activity than management.

Leadership is the process of trying to influence other people to achieve a given goal.  In the business world, it also involves determining what goals should be pursued.  Managers do need to do some of this.  They have to try to inspire their employees to do their jobs.  However, their main job is to maintain order in their organization.  They are trying to take the goals that are set for them and make sure the goals are achieved.

By contrast, leaders are more of the visionary types.  Leadership involves identifying the sorts of changes that need to happen in an organization.  It involves trying to inspire people to believe in the need for change.  It involves persuading them to give their full effort to pursue that change with all of their energy.

In short, leadership is more creative and inspiring.  Management is  more about making sure that everything runs smoothly in the pursuit of a given goal.

destiny07's profile pic

destiny07 | (Level 2) eNoter

Posted on

The difference between a manager and a leader. When you are a leader, you work from the heart.As a manager, you work from the head. Although it is probably more complex than that, the point to remember is the difference between what you do as a leader and what you do as a manager—and the constant need to be able to do both. Furthermore, the head and heart need to be partners, not independent operators.


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