Though both the terms “management” and “leader” are a part of our daily vocabulary and are often considered synonymous, have we really thought about the existence of a potential difference between the two? Can a manager always be called a true leader? The answer quite simply is “no”— why else could you not do away with several complaints against you manager, sometimes even after serving a particular organization for a considerable length of time? Or for that matter even you yourself are a manager of a particular department are you confident enough of leading a different department without required training? If the answer is a “no”, know that it is only because being a trained manager does not necessarily imply you are an equally efficient leader.
Let us find out more on the difference between a manager and a leader.
a) Management essentially involves formal training in the form of varied training courses on Hotel Management, Business management etc. Leadership on the other hand is an inherent quality and is never hierarchy-specific. Unlike a manager like a CEO or Operations Manager who is necessarily abiding by certain organizational norms, even a common coordinator in the organization can don the hat of a leader if necessity arises—not by claiming the all important chair of the manager but just by inspiring his fellow workers in various ways, bailing them out of trouble, or even by guiding them on small steps etc.
b) A true leader generally has the time to educate and train his successors, which a manager barely concentrating on his official duties, is unable to do on most of the occasions.
c) A manager can only be called a true leader when he has certain qualities:

  • He pays heed to the voice of his subordinates
  • He understands the pulse of each and every member of at least his own group
  • He scrutinizes a problem in its entirety by going back right to its planning stage
  • He is able to comprehend the most needling issues at present
  • He has extraordinary anticipatory powers
  • He has the most relevant solutions to offer
  • He has the ability to gauge and clear animosity within team members with a view to facilitate smooth functioning of a company
  • He has a keen eye for the positive and negative qualities of his workers
  • One who goes beyond his organizational capability to stand up for what is right
  • One who has eye for talent and the prudence to acknowledge it
  • One who wins true respect and trust of his people
  • One who inspires innovation


At the end it must be admitted that being one of the key virtues of true leadership, management in itself is no cakewalk. The stress of handling an entire department (perhaps of the entire organization at times!) is ever mounting! To keep a track of all the aforementioned factors might not be as easy as it sounds. However, management in its totality becomes an art when blended with some of the other qualities of true leadership. Leadership on the other hand, though can hardly be imparted in trainings can definitely be inspired. In fact it is the duty of a true leader to mentor his successors, not by formal training, but definitely by setting examples in his own way.