Difference Between Leadership and Management

Traits To Be A Leader And Manager, Difference Between Leadership And Management With Examples Infographic

What are the traits to be a good leader or manager? The main difference between leadership and management is the difference between leading people with influencing and managing the people and work packages. Just reading books about leadership, implementing some ideas, and measuring performance relying on the number of completed tasks do not make you a leader. For example, the efficiency of a lapidist is something more than the number of stones he has cut in a limited time. His efficiency lies behind the crown jewel that he created.

Who is a Manager?

In business and project management, a manager is a person who directs the workforce or controls resources within the organization. From this aspect, a manager is a member of an organization who conducts duties and coordinates people in order to meet organizational goals. He/She has the authority and the power of people in his/her team. Depending on the performance and behavior of employees, he/she can punish or reward them.

Most managers tend to be leaders but only a few of them who possess leadership traits and qualities such as creating a vision, creating value, changing systems, influencing people, etc. can be leaders. Mostly they maintain the status and focus on short-term goals.

In short, managers build or maintain systems and processes in order to get credit from top management or stakeholders.

Who is a Leader?

A leader is a value-creator who is setting a vision for a group of people or who influences a group towards the achievement of a goal.

Generally, leaders are people who have innovative and creative solutions for an organization.

They don’t necessarily hold or occupy a management position, they can be a figure either inside or outside the organization.

Leader Versus Manager

For a better understanding of the difference between leadership and management, let’s discuss the traits needed to be a leader and manager.

Traits Needed to Be a Leader

Below are some of the traits that a good leader must have;


A leader must have the ability to inspire his/her team and persuade them to follow him/her. Leaders have their own styles. They are willing to be themselves.

Ability to Solve the Problems

A leader should carry the responsibility to solve the problems when needed. They must have their own techniques to solve the problems.

Honesty & Integrity

Honesty and integrity are the ingredients that a good manager must have. Otherwise, people don’t believe you and they don’t follow you. Leaders build loyalty and trust.


A leader must know where he/she is and what he/she would like to achieve or accomplish in the mid-term or long-term future.


A leader must be a good communicator who conveys his ideas and opinions to others in an effective way. He/She must keep others informed of the journey and explains where they are and where they will arrive.

Traits Needed to Be a Manager

There are traits that a good manager must-have. Below are some of them;

Execute a Vision

A manager must have the ability to execute a strategic vision. He/She creates a roadmap for his team to follow the vision.

Direct the Team

A manager directs his team to perform their responsibilities on a daily basis. He makes resource planning and optimizes the resources while directing the team.

Manage the Process

Establishing processes, work rules, and creating procedures are the managers’ business to run the business effectively.

People Focused

Managers must be people-focused. They must be aware of the team members’ needs to increase their productivity. A manager must also encourage decision-making within the team to solve problems effectively.

Difference Between Leadership and Management

One of the main differences between a leader and a manager is that a leader guides people or team members to attain the goal. However, a manager forces team members to work for the goal. Managers administer people to perform their daily work efforts.

There are lots of differences between a manager and a leader. A few of them are below

  • Leaders build a vision, managers follow goals and targets
  • Leaders like to change the status and the systems, managers like to maintain their status.
  • Leaders think long-term, managers think short-term.
  • Leaders coach, managers administer
  • Leaders focus on people, manager focus on systems and structure
  • Leaders guide the workforce towards success, managers tell people what to do.
  • Leaders invent. On the other hand, managers organize teamwork.
  • Leaders take risks. On the other hand managers control risks.
  • Leaders innovate. On the other hand, managers rely on existing and proven methods.
  • Leaders have fans. On the other hand, managers have employees.


Leadership and management are two important concepts in business. Managers and leaders carry different responsibilities and roles. Simply put managers have functions such as planning, organizing, leading, and controlling different than leaders. Leaders have different functions such as motivation, encouraging employees, providing inspiration and guidance different than managers.

A leader and manager may carry out the same responsibility while managing a project or a company. Because there is a continual adjustment of the direction and controlling resources to achieve the goals.

In this article, we answer the question – what is the difference between leadership and management? We hope that it will be useful for professionals who want to improve their knowledge in the field of project management.

See Also

Leadership Styles

Types of Organizational Structures

Emotional Intelligence in Project Management

Best management styles

External Reference


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