Leadership and Management: What Is the Difference?

Cite this


Today it is apparent that there is need to understanding the relationship between management and leadership styles due to diversification in current employment patterns. Arguably, the discipline of management seems to be surrendering its role to that of leadership. On the other hand, leadership style is often a major concern over employees’ performance and eventually, the organisation’s presentation. A highly performing leader steers activities to unexpected supercilious heights, but this requires strong guidance skills to help a group achieve certain goals/results. Therefore, leadership is guidance or a supportive procedure mainly concerned with how people create rapport, communicate and live by the significances of life towards a common achievement (Hargreaves, 2003). According to Hargreaves (2003), for an administrative style to be effective, people must share control values instead of subordinates submitting to authoritarian power as indicated by some set rules or policies of the firm.

On-Time Delivery!
Get your customized and 100% plagiarism-free paper done in as little as 3 hours
Let’s start
322 specialists online

The process of leadership or management is considerably complex due to differences in anticipated results or expectations among staff/employees. People have different beliefs, synergy or energy levels, expectations, experiences, and technological advancements, among other aspects. The differences bring about superimposing experiences, thus placing very high expectations and challenges to any form of administrative style. Contrary, management lacks measurable elements or factors to meet expectations. What is the difference between leadership and management? Do successful leaders always make successful managers? This paper compares as well as contrasts leadership and management styles of administration.


There is a huge difference between leadership and management. Successful leaders are not always successful mangers, but a leader can be a manager as well.

The distinction between leadership and management

Any organisation needs both a leader and a manager. The managers dominate most of the governance styles. The main differences lie between various supreme approaches to administration. Managers have a value for results while leaders value relationships among members. There are high regards over positions in management while this is not evident in leadership. The leaders take reputed high risks compared to the managers since they are personal, caring and avoid replicating others’ rules (Heifetz, 2004). On the other hand, the managers will often conform to existing rules and want to ensure the protection of the status quo when changes seem to occur, making the leaders more innovative and ready to engage organisational changes for better performances than managers (Heifetz, 2004). The leaders’ style of guidance is non-functional, thus inspiring and motivational compared to the management style of functionally analysing, evaluating and solving problems from an authoritarian and personal perspective.

The leadership hierarchy restrains the flow of unnecessary information, poor policies of a firm, agendas that conflict governance as well as pressures for the need to achieve goals, thus making the style incredibly difficulty over the provision of overall directions (Mathis et al., 2007). Centrally, the manager follows the generally outlined policies in accordance with the constraints of resources and time. According to Heifetz (2004), the issues of leadership in organisations have revolutionised due to introduction of different age groups, and therefore the reference of administration made over the decades concerning the ability to hold top management positions has become obsolete. Today management procedures are still very common, but current trends indicate that people have discovered some distinctions between managers and leaders. The discoveries indicate that the process of exercising leadership skills, styles and qualities have a different meaning from that of providing a vision and influencing those who are led into the realisation of coexistence and sharing of thoughts.

Arguably, from an analytical or professional perspective, it is possible to define the leadership style of governance in two ways. First is the ability to have considerations of various aspects in the organisation such as age, gender, performance, experience and energy differences, characterised by an emphasis over good relations. In this situation, the leader is a good listener who is approachable and friendly. Unlike the manager whose focus is on managing work, the leadership style entails openness thus enlisting the mental trust among those involved.

Secondly is the ability to engage a leadership behaviour that directs people in an organisation or a firm and assists in defining goals, structure and style of execution (Hargreaves, 2003). Unlike managers who mane the decisions, leaders facilitate the resolutions.

Yes, we can!
Our experts can deliver a custom Leadership and Management: What Is the Difference? paper for only $13.00 $11/page
Learn More
322 specialists online

Relationship between Leadership and Management

Leadership is socially and scientifically a process that involves interpersonal communication to influence an outcome. According to Mathis et al. (2007), leadership is symbolic to the human nature of modifying the attitudes and behaviours of people in order to meet organisational goals and needs. The actions taken by leaders are appealing to the heart while that taken by managers appeals to the mind. Therefore, leadership styles involve acts enacted through persuasion or communication as opposed to force or tagging on rules. The leadership influences meant to benefit or unite a certain group of people is often positive. How does the leader create positive influences? A leader has strategies to influence the behaviours of others through communication. Therefore, leaders persuade by selling ideas, while managers acquaint followers with their proposals. Leadership exerts influences towards the achievement of group goals by seeking visions while managers seek objectives. This is why every person in a group ought to be an emergent leader, especially when diverse group tasks are involved (Barton, 2000). A designated leader has to be acceptable in the group for better outcomes. The group may have shared leadership skills among members, but, eventually, it is important to have someone responsible for coordination or communication of different group activities.

Types of leadership styles or approaches

Traditionally, there was a belief that leadership skills were in-born. Therefore, leaders had special traits or characteristics, which were within the family genes. Today it is evident that leadership traits are earned and, therefore, there exist no special attributes for leaders. The administrative styles are either the personal charisma/patterns that leaders exhibit in the group setting or the formal authoritarianism that managers display (Miller, 2008).

The major administrative styles exhibited include autocratic, democratic or Paternalistic, laissez-faire style, free reign styles and ability to delegate. The democratic leadership type encourages members to participate equally on matters concerning the organisation such as decision or rule/regulation-making procedures. Laissez-faire leaders have no initiative to group members, and therefore, they take no initiative to foster group idea. The autocratic leaders have strict control over group members; thus, they require strict follow of the orders to solve problems.

Comparing various styles on current organisational settings, people are more confident in the democratic or transformational type of leadership as opposed to autocratic and transactional, which bars stakeholder’s participation. People are better off with a leader who provides solutions to problems as in the autocratic system as opposed to the laissez-faire system. In the autocratic groups, members’ performance is excellent when the leader in there, but the member become less aggressive or apathetic when no one is in control. This means that there is a good leadership style for all systems, namely democratic because it assists in matching peoples needs and differences to the situation. In line with Mathis et al. (2007), democracy brings about many changes in the system.

People Collaboration

Members of a team adhere to a chosen administration style due to the type of control directed to them. Good leadership avails chances of interactive participation of all members in the organisation regardless of their status: age, gender, cultural difference, and experience. A faculty meeting ought to categorise issues with respect to matters of concern but avail opportunities that support employee’s morale. According to Miller (2008), this is a healthy governance approach because it enables the employees and other members of the organisation to critic or compels the leaders with competitive views and opinions. Their active participation in decision-making is important for the organisational goals since they assist in validation and keeping the person in charge to be in-line of reality. Corresponding to Miller, (2008) dynamic dialogue cools any conflicting contemplations and maintains the cooperation between the involved parties. Members learn something and are enthusiastic about such gatherings since it reduces their isolation and provides some positive perception about meetings.


There are some key factors that determine the differences between leadership and management. Group trust is a pre-requisite aspect of leadership that calls for those in charge to portray honesty and show concern or care for their followers’ needs and thoughts, but at the same time remain accountable over their deeds (Booyeen, 2008). Secondly, there is a need to honour commitments and pronouncements. Respect is an inevitable aspect of both leadership and management. The manager or leader ought to respect others’ opinions and respond to their requests amicably and respectably due to the thought that differences of opinion are an eminent sign of progress. Lastly, manager and leaders need to have a set of values, which their followers can identify with or connect to such as courageousness, reliability, integrity, competence, honesty, altruism, and fairness (Miller, 2008). According to Hargreaves (2003), trust is like a pillar that runs through every style of administration to ensure its success. People will take a considerable amount of time to trust, and therefore, great and consistent efforts over honesty are a requirement. A combination of these traits makes it possible to have managers who are also good leaders.


Heifetz R A. (2004). Leadership without Easy Answers. London, Harvard University Press. Print.

Cut 15% OFF your first order
We’ll deliver a custom Management Theory paper tailored to your requirements with a good discount
Use discount
322 specialists online

Hargreaves, A. (2003). Teaching in the Knowledge Society. New York, NY: Teachers’ College Publishes. Print.

Mathis, R, L., Jackson, J. H. and Elliott, T. L. (2007). Human Resource Management. Thomson Southwestern Publishers. Print.

Miller, C. (2008, May 30). Cultural Diversity is an Opportunity. Web.

Cite this paper

Select style


BusinessEssay. (2022, October 21). Leadership and Management: What Is the Difference? Retrieved from https://business-essay.com/leadership-and-management-what-is-the-difference/


BusinessEssay. (2022, October 21). Leadership and Management: What Is the Difference? https://business-essay.com/leadership-and-management-what-is-the-difference/

Work Cited

"Leadership and Management: What Is the Difference?" BusinessEssay, 21 Oct. 2022, business-essay.com/leadership-and-management-what-is-the-difference/.


BusinessEssay. (2022) 'Leadership and Management: What Is the Difference'. 21 October.


BusinessEssay. 2022. "Leadership and Management: What Is the Difference?" October 21, 2022. https://business-essay.com/leadership-and-management-what-is-the-difference/.

1. BusinessEssay. "Leadership and Management: What Is the Difference?" October 21, 2022. https://business-essay.com/leadership-and-management-what-is-the-difference/.


BusinessEssay. "Leadership and Management: What Is the Difference?" October 21, 2022. https://business-essay.com/leadership-and-management-what-is-the-difference/.