Managers vs Leaders

Frequently we mistake managers for leaders. While a manager might be a leader and a leader might be a manager, there is no guarantee that a manager is a leader or a leader is a manager.

A manager would do things such as hire, train, monitor etc. They are concerned with making sure others do things a certain way (hopefully, the right way). A leader instigates and takes charge and instead of waiting for others to be first, the leader is the first to do things.

Managers are important. Someone must organize things. Someone must educate people. Someone must schedule. If it weren’t for managers, troops going into battle would be marching into many ambushes.

If there is an emergency, a manager is the one who makes sure there are enough people to deal with the situation, assigns tasks, monitors progress etc. Sometimes there is some resentment toward these managers because while the workers are getting their hands dirty (figuratively or literally), the manager is “above it all” monitoring.

Leaders are vital. Someone must be out front. Someone must set the example. Someone must motivate through actions instead of just words. If it weren’t for leaders, troops would be well organized, well planned and never get into the field.

If there is an emergency, the leader is frequently the first one to get their hands dirty. They are “in the ditches” they are leading the charge. When the workers are wondering if they should continue, the leader is the one who sets the example to keep marching, keep fighting keep doing.

Managers without leaders result in inaction

Leaders without managers result in chaos.

There are some great examples from history of people who are both but they are rare.

The big mistake is to mistake a manager for a leader or a leader for a manager when they aren’t both. Recognizing the difference and the importance of each will result in a much better organization

Have a great day!

If you haven’t done so already please check out the book “11 +10 = 1” at

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