Using Examples Compare and Contrast the Characteristics of Both Managers and Leaders.

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Using examples compare and contrast the characteristics of both managers and leaders.


Leadership and management are two bipolar systems of worker administration in current business environment as defined by Kumle and Kelly (2000, 8). It is a topic most debated upon due to the similar characteristic of the roles they play in an organization which often intertwine. Leaders and managers are however disparate in their nature of act. As applied in a team-based organizational structure, the argument is that managers and leaders differs in the perceived entailment of authority they posses as viewed by their employees. However, they compliment one another and can be cultivated in order to be effectual. In this essay we will discuss how the traits of managers and leaders contrast one another by comparison. We will then analyze and evaluate how these differences can offset the other leading to the conclusion that both positions are highly congruent in order to achieve an effective situational leadership approach in an organization, eliminating the “false dichotomy” between the two (Adair 2005, 31). It is vitally important for leaders to posses not only leadership quality but also substantiated managerial skills, and vice versa, especially in today’s cutthroat business environment.

Leaders and managers are often confused due to the stark similarity of authoritative position they entails but are different in their defining factors. They are the same because of their essential role of being the person in the lead of the employees and being their source of command. However they are different in the effect they play in an organization as well as the perspective they emanates to the employees as well as the world. Leadership is the aptitude to guide and direct the embodying team towards an end goal while management is the astute means of completing the targets (Kumle and Kelly 2000, 9). As the famous saying by Warren Bennis (1989), “managers do things right while leaders do the right thing”. It is essential to realize the difference because some managers might not possess certain leadership qualities, as it is that leaders might not necessarily be an effective manager. Managers are more structural in nature through perseverance, consistency and knowledge while leaders on the adverse lean more towards an artistic and innovative mindset (Zaleznik 1992, 127). The difference lies in the nature of act. Managers often referred to the position of authority while leaders refer to an inspirational and far-sightedness innate trait of a person.

The style of corporate management distinguishes leaders from managers. Being a leader refers to the possession of innate characteristics and trait models of visionaries. They are the source of inspiration as they posses illuminating qualities and attributes which would be the driving force leading the company towards success. Personality traits such as charisma, gusto, honesty, assurance and the ability to foster genuine connection with people (Adair 2005, 29-30) is the fundamental composition that will bring together the entire workforce to advance towards success. A manager on the other hand is the behavioral model that these leaders ought to undertake in order to be effective in committing their roles. One might be an effective manager but they may not be the epitome of a leader that will push an advance the organization beyond their limit. For example, Apple Corporation have had fair management control but they only attained its high innovative achiever status due to Steve Job’s charismatic and ground-breaking input that transformed the company (Shontell 2011). Thus, this highlights the empirical quality that is characteristically of leaders and not necessarily of managers. Therefore, the style and characteristics of managers and leaders differentiate them in terms of extend of success they produce.

The nature of relationship with employee is an evident difference between...
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