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The difference between a Manager and a Leader



Management and leadership are two different distinct and yet complementary sets of management activities. A person can be a manager or a leader, both or neither. Management functions are also referred to as Management activities. A manager is someone who is considered to carry out management functions such as planning, organising, leading and controlling. A manager ensures that organisational rules and procedures are followed and that systems are maintained.

In general managers focus on the following tasks:

· Focus on daily task completion

· Establish goals and formulate strategies

· Coordinate and motivate employees

· Improve employee morale and productivity

· Cope with complexity

· Do things right.


A leader, however is a different ball game, a leader goes beyond the application of the basic management functions. Not only does this individual create a conducive environment to work in he/she has the responsibility to inspire employees and remain focused on the objectives and goals of the organisation. A leader is considered to set the direction of the organisation and motivate people to follow the vision.

In general leaders:

· Develop the vision, mission and strategies that direct the organisation

· Take responsibility, make decisions and solve complex problems

· Express compassion and take care people

· Recognise and reward success

· Make things happen

· Engage others by creating shared meaning

· Have a vision

· Have integrity

· Are good listeners

· Cope with change

· Do the right thing.


To conclude, from what I have shared one can conclude that managers focus on non- behavioural aspects of management, such as setting and selection of individual employee or team goals that are in line with organisational goals, the development of strategy, the design of organisational structure and control of activities to ensure company goals are met within a specific time frame. Leaders, however focus on behavioural aspects that mobilise employees to adapt to change and follow the direction established by the leader. Both roles play a very imperative role within the organisation and organisations need both to be effective and efficient.






Nozuko Tikayo

"Align all the elements of your life to support the pursuit of what has deep meaning to you"

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