You don’t automatically become a leader when you are promoted to a role responsible for managing people. There are several differences between being a leader and being a manager.
- Managers Make Goals vs. Leaders Create Visions
Leaders inspire and motivate their people by painting a vision of what they believe is possible. They then think beyond what they are doing and develop a plan that will allow them to reach their goals. They know that teams can accomplish more when working together. Managers are focused on setting goals and measuring their progress. They also control situations to reach them.
- Managers Maintain Status Quo vs. Leaders Are Change Agents
Leaders are known for their passion for innovation and are committed to finding new ways to improve the way things work. They also understand that changes can create waves in the system. To improve their organizations, managers constantly look for ways to improve their processes and procedures.
- Manager’s Copy vs Leaders Are Unique
Leaders are known for being self-aware and are willing to stand out. They are also comfortable in their skin and are transparent and authentic. Because of this, managers often copy and paste other individuals’ behaviors and competencies to improve their leadership style.
- Managers Risk Control vs. Leaders Take Risks
Leaders are willing to try new things even if they may fail. They know that failure is a step toward success. Conversely, managers are more likely to control or avoid problems instead of embracing them.
- Managers Are Short-Term vs. Leaders Are The Long Haul
Leaders are intentional about setting goals and staying motivated to reach them. They tend to remain motivated even though they don’t receive regular rewards. On the other hand, managers are more likely to achieve short-term goals and seek more recognition.
- Managers Rely On Skills They Have vs. Leaders Grow
Leaders know that they will eventually fall behind if they aren’t constantly learning something new. They seek information and people that will help them remain relevant in today’s world of work. Conversely, managers are more likely to double down on their skills and adopt proven behaviors.
- Managers Build Systems vs. Leaders Build Relationships
Leaders are focused on their people, who are the people they need to influence to realize their vision. They deeply understand them and are committed to delivering on their promises. On the contrary, managers are more likely to focus on the structures that will allow them to achieve their goals. They also ensure the systems are in place to achieve their objectives.
- Managers Direct vs. Leaders Coach
Leaders know that their people are capable of finding the answers to their problems. They also believe that they are competent and have the potential to excel. Leaders avoid the temptation to tell their subordinates what to do. Instead, they provide guidance and assign tasks.
- Managers Have Employees vs. Leaders Create Fans
People who go beyond following a leader become their fervent promoters, who help build their credibility and increase their visibility. On the other hand, managers have staff members who seek to please their boss.