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Leadership vs. Management


The words “leadership” and “management” my seem like synonyms to some, but there are distinct differences between the two.

What is Leadership?

Some people might define leadership as a person who is in charge of a group. Others might define leadership as someone with charisma and the ability to motivate and inspire their followers. Both definitions are acceptable. “Leadership and management are different but complementary skills. Leadership is a soft talent. It revolves around influence, motivation, drive, and other unquantifiable skills” (Spahr 2015). To be a leader, you need to do be able to do more than manage others. You need to be able to persevere in fearful, dangerous and difficult situations.

What is Management?

Management is evaluating, organizing, planning and implementing skills in order to accomplish something. Management occurs when a person keeps a project or plan on schedule. According to the Business Dictionary (2017), management is “the organization and coordination of the activities of a business in order to achieve defined objectives.” Over time and experience, anyone can develop management skills and improve in them as they practice. A major difference between management and leadership is that for leadership, people are following a person in charge, while in management, people are working for the person in charge. Different Traits Found in Manager & Leader

Traits Found in Managers vs. Leaders

Manager Leader
Plans the Details Sets the Direction
Minimizes Risks Takes Risks
Instructs Employees Encourages People
Has Objectives Has Vision
Meets Expectations Charts New Growth
Sees A Problem Sees An Opportunity
Approves Motivates


Relations and Application

Leadership and management work together. Managing situations with leadership skills is beneficial to everyone involved. A leader with management skills is better than one without. Leaders have followers. On the other hand, managers have employees who in subordinate positions. When a manager has leadership skills, it becomes easier for the employees to follow the lead of the manager. They will respect the manager and trust the manager enough to listen and follow directions. The same thing goes for leaders with management skills. What good is a leader if they don’t know how to evaluate a difficult situation at hand and organize it efficiently? When leaders have management skills, they can lead their followers and meet their goals.



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