Warren Bennis once created a whole list of distinctions between manager and leader, some of the following may be helpful.
- The manager administers, the leader innovates
- The manager is a copy, the leader is an original
- The manager maintains, the leader develops
- The manager focuses on systems and structure, the leader focuses on people
- The manager relies on control, the leader inspires trust
- The manager has a short term view, the leader has a long term view
- The manager asks why and how, the leader asks what and why
- The manager has her eye on the bottom line, the leader has her eye on the horizon“
Leaders focus on employee engagement – inspiring trust, developing people, and creating an organization that is innovative and looking at the horizon. Another way to summarize the list is that managers “do things right” and leaders do the “right thing”.