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Leadership and Management

25 Differences between leadership and management 

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By Dr Brighton Chireka 

“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” – Peter Drucker

Leadership and management are two distinct concepts that involve different skills and abilities. While both roles are important for the success of an organization, there are some key differences between them. Here are 25 differences between leadership and management:

  1. Leaders focus on the big picture while managers focus on day-to-day operations.
  2. Leaders create a vision while managers create plans to achieve it.
  3. Leaders inspire people to work towards a common goal while managers assign tasks and monitor progress.
  4. Leaders motivate people to take action while managers provide guidance and direction.
  5. Leaders set the tone for the organization while managers maintain order and consistency.
  6. Leaders influence others through their words and actions while managers use authority to get things done.
  7. Leaders have a long-term view of success while managers have a short-term view of success.
  8. Leaders focus on innovation and creativity while managers focus on efficiency and productivity.
  9. Leaders build relationships with their team members while managers manage relationships with external stakeholders such as customers, suppliers, etc..
  10. Leaders take risks in pursuit of their vision while managers minimize risk by following established procedures or protocols .
  11. Leaders make decisions based on intuition or gut feeling while managers make decisions based on data or facts .
  12. Leaders empower others to take ownership of their work while managers delegate tasks .
  13. Leaders encourage collaboration among team members while managers ensure tasks are completed within deadlines .
  14. Leadership is about inspiring people to do more than they thought possible, whereas management is about getting things done efficiently .
  15. Leadership is about motivating people to reach higher levels of performance, whereas management is about controlling resources .
  16. Leaders think outside the box, whereas Managers think inside the box .
  17. Leaders develop strategies for long-term success, whereas Managers implement tactics for short-term results .
  18. Leaders foster an environment of trust and respect, whereas Managers enforce rules and regulations.
  19. Leaders encourage open communication among team members, whereas Managers communicate directives from top down.
  20. Leaders promote change , whereas Managers maintain status quo in order to keep things running smoothly .   
  21. Leaders look for ways to improve processes , whereas Managers look for ways to optimize existing processes.
  22. Leaders bring out the best in people , whereas Managers bring out the best in teams
  23. Leaders innovate , whereas Managers execute 
  24. Leaders challenge assumptions , whereas Managers follow instructions.
  25. Leaders focus on growth , whereas Managers focus on stability 

In conclusion leaders and managers are two distinct roles with different responsibilities. Leaders focus on the big picture, inspiring people to reach their potential and motivating them to take action. They create a vision, build relationships, take risks, and make decisions based on intuition. Managers on the other hand focus on day-to-day operations, assigning tasks, minimizing risk, making data-driven decisions and enforcing regulations. Leaders foster an environment of trust and respect while managers maintain order and consistency to keep things running smoothly.


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