The words “manager” and “leader” are often used interchangeably, but they mean different things in a corporate environment. If a person is a manager, they occupy a particular position in an organization that places specific responsibilities on them as well as a duty to oversee subordinates (Algahtani, 2014). Leaders, in contrast, can have any role in an organization, but they also lead and inspire their colleagues (Algahtani, 2014). In this essay, the unique characteristics of managers and leaders are considered, arguing that the former is concerned with administrative tasks while the latter is a behavior that inspires and guides others with revolutionary ideas.
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Leaders and Managers
As mentioned before, managers are people in a particular administrative position. They have a level of authority that places them above other workers in the corporate hierarchy, giving them the ability to make decisions and assign tasks (Allen, 2018). Furthermore, managers often become a channel of communication between employees and top levels of the organization. Therefore, management’s primary goal is to run the business through the workforce by setting goals, providing instructions, and upholding the values and vision of the company (Allen, 2018). Leaders can but do not always occupy a managerial position. They are employees of any level who influence other workers, engaging them in the organization’s processes and guiding them through personal example, emotional connection, inspiration, communication, and other activities not directly related to the business side of operations (Allen, 2018). Thus, leaders need to possess qualities that make them stand out and draw attention to their ideas while also encouraging action.
One can see that both managers and leaders guide the staff in one way or another. Thus, they are similar in their control over others, although the source of this control is different. However, there are many differences between the two positions. Managers have to maintain the status quo and be an example of following the established procedures (Algahtani, 2014). In contrast, leaders often innovate and show new approaches to old tasks (Algahtani, 2014). Managers are reliable, system-focused, and organized, while leaders are open-minded, change-driven, and people-focused.
Examples and the Effect on Staff
A person with excellent managerial skills creates an environment where each employee knows what to do and how to do it. This manager makes the duties of each subordinate transparent, creating a structure where all staff members understand how they should act to adhere to the company’s mission and objectives. The manager also has a clear view of short-term goals and their completion strategies (Allen, 2018). The staff under this manager are organized, disciplined, and aware of what is needed from them.
A great leader is an individual that draws other workers in and creates a vision that can improve the current status quo of the organization. For example, if an organization has a problem with communication between different levels of employees, a leader may act as an ambassador, collecting information, discussing the issue with other workers, and encouraging them to demand positive changes (Allen, 2018). Under such a leader, the staff is determined and interested in the improvement of the workplace.
Finally, a person with poor managerial skills cannot explain to employees what are their goals and mission. Such a manager is not transparent in sharing information, often making workers confused and dissatisfied with the workplace environment. Moreover, unskilled managers may abuse their power, controlling employees, or giving them unnecessary tasks (Allen, 2018). Under these conditions, the staff may leave their job quickly or be frustrated and unhappy.
Emotional Intelligence Test Results
There are four segments that the Emotional Intelligence Test measures. The first part is self-awareness, where I have 8 points. This result demonstrates my ability to reflect on my thoughts and behaviors as well as emotions and responses to other people’s actions (“The Global EI,” 2019). A high score in this segment shows that I have self-confidence and a realistic view of my capabilities. The second part is self-management, in which I have 7 points. Self-management includes the ability to control emotions and maintain information transparency, manage oneself, and adapt to changing situations (“The Global EI,” 2019). This result reveals to me that I need to work on emotional control to improve my communication with others.
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The third element is social awareness; my result is 10 points. Social awareness shows one’s competency in empathy, service orientation, and organizational consciousness (“The Global EI,” 2019). As a leader, I can listen to others and create a sense of mutual collaboration, being adaptable, and understanding. Finally, I have 7 points in relationship management, which is responsible for inspiring and influencing others as well as building strong relationships (“The Global EI,” 2019). I learned that I need to be more persuasive and confident in delivering my ideas.
All in all, the descriptions of “manager” and “leader” show how different these concepts are. While the former is a professional occupation, the latter is a position in a group that can be occupied by anyone regardless of their profession. Managers maintain organizational processes and create goals to achieve, while leaders find new ways to solve problems and bring people together to encourage change. Managerial and leadership qualities impact the staff’s satisfaction with their job and their performance. Emotional intelligence is a set of skills that a person should possess to become an attentive and effective leader.
Algahtani, A. (2014). Are leadership and management different? A review. Journal of Management Policies and Practices, 2(3), 71-82.
Allen, T. (2018). What is the difference between management and leadership? Forbes. Web.
The Global EI test results. (2019). Web.