Comparing Management and Leadership

Comparing Management and Leadership


Management and leadership are terms that are mostly used interchangeably to refer on the direction taken by an institution as it is led by individuals. Institutions, over the years have been gradually changing given the intensity and levels of competition and consumer preference changes. The management of an entity can be entrusted to leaders who should formulate strategic policies for the purposes of realizing objectives of such institutions. These leaders, however, have been failing shareholders by participating in gross misconduct and fraud in their offices.

The management of different organizations is steered by capable and trusted individuals with academic qualification and requisite experience necessary to ensure such institutions are a success. Poor resolutions by managers lead to severe loses to an organization by reducing investment worth of those shareholders. Therefore, it ought to be noted when the shareholders buy the shares of an entity, they expect to derive dividends from those shares (Forsell, 2004). Individual shareholders are more concerned about the growth of their business and as such, they keep track of businesses through market measures such as market information and stock prices.

Negative information regarding a company makes shareholders make some quick decisions in withdrawing their shareholdings from such institutions. The withdrawal is dangerous to the organization’s leadership as they have very few options on how they can redeem themselves (Rothstein & Burke, 2010). An organization that is successful ensures there is efficient coordination between leaders in various departments besides augmented management. It is important for an organization to have adequate leaders and managerial staff who work in tandem with the aim of further the vision and goals of an institution.

The purpose of this paper is to compare leadership and management as used in the contexts of business. Leadership and management are two differing terminologies which are used for purpose of describing the diverse undertakings made by an organization.


This is a term used by organizations in reference to coordination of human resources for purposes of achieving objectives and goals in a manner that is effective and efficient. Management is comprised of various functions that help in the attainment of goals set by an organization. These functions include staffing, planning, leading, organization and controlling (Rothstein & Burke, 2010). For an institution to register success, it is supposed to follow these functions to the latter.

Factors that are most important in production are human resources. They are supposed to be remunerated well besides being provided with a working environment that is conducive for purposes of boosting morale (Forsell, 2004). Poor pay lowers the morale of workers and it affects the output of the organization. Workers who are remunerated and recognized have motivation that is needed to carry out their duties with utmost diligence.


Management begins with planning. Management that is effective is guided via plans set by managers who are rational. Planning entails cooperation between the stakeholders and top management. Knowledge of the missions and visions of business precedes excellent planning. The management forecasts on the future with the purpose of having a scope that is theoretical on which the company can be planned (Rothstein & Burke, 2010). The management also has the mandate of ensuring there are proper structures put into place in order to enhance course of actions.

In management, planning is what marks the start of a long journey to success. It is due to this fact that managers need to have adequate knowledge so as to analyze business situations as well as come up with inferences that are sustainable. Understanding of budgeting, data extrapolation and staffing are crucial towards assisting managers make decisions that are rational regarding their institutions (Forsell, 2004).

During the stage of planning, leaders are very important as they use their visions to ensure the appropriate strategic policies are put into place with reference to the future. Leaders as well provide necessary morale for the facilitation of strong policies and strategies formulation that are aimed at steering the company towards profits and operating as a going concern (Armstrong, 2012). At the stage of planning, a leader makes sure they coordinate activities of various stakeholders unlike managers whose focus is on utilization of skills for purposes of formulating strategies.


Managers have different knowledge and skills in different fields. They apply these skills in finding solutions to problems an organization faces. Manager, due to their professional backgrounds constitute the top management of an organization and they are well placed to tackle issues of budgeting. Budgeting involves setting standards used against actual performances to check on variances. Such standards are se on the basis of past information and the information from the industry in which the organization operates. In some instances, experts formulate standards for purposes of accuracy. The management as well as to check actual outcome and compare the set standards. If variances are seen, then managers should take the appropriate actions in order to make sure the deviations are addressed immediately (Rothstein & Burke, 2010).

Under budgeting, leaders are not often involved since they are well placed to offer strategies. Leaders might lack the ability of projecting budgets since they are aligned towards ensuring the institutions goals are realized through their efforts in bringing various production factors together (Jones & Jenkins, 2011). Budgeting as well requires efforts of all departmental managers for the organization to succeed. It is the leaders who make sure all the managers are well informed regarding meetings as well as when misunderstandings arise, they showcase leadership by resolving issues in an amicable manner.


The objectives of an organization are usually realized when the tasks are distributed evenly among employees. Every member of an organization should have a role to play towards contributing to the profit margins. For such roles to be undertaken, they must be well defined by the management for reasons of efficiency in performance. Managers have requisite knowledge to formulate job descriptions that match a given vacancy in an organization (Armstrong, 2012). The managers access jobs to be carried out in an entity on the basis of goal congruence. Successful structures of roles in an entity enhance operations efficiency and as such, an entity benefits through reduced costs.

Primarily, leaders are excellent at making sure what managers resolve is actually realized by establishing directions that are ideal for getting the appropriate personnel. They provide advice on areas the managers might have overlooked. Leaders as well ensure they work with managers in harmony to facilitate organizational goals (O’Neil, 2011).


This is the process of making sure a company hires the appropriate employees and it is undertaken by managers. By assessing job description, the managers have the duty to employ personnel that is competent and highly qualified who believe in the vision of the company. It is crucial to carry out continuous appraisal of the employees. Managers have to come up with proper recognition and reward systems that enhance employee morale as such increasing their level of productivity (Jones & Jenkins, 2011).

Managers who fail to recognize their employees through appreciation and rewards record poor productions as well as high employee turnover rates. In the bid to attract the appropriate employees, an entity is supposed to have excellent public reputations and image besides being profitable (Forsell, 2004). In these modern times, the nature of business has become competitive hence, managers are supposed to recruit the right employees combination with the capability of boosting profitability and productivity of an entity. The managers as well must make sure they create working environment that is favorable where the workers are comfortable carrying out their day to day activities.

With regard to staffing, leaders are supposed to make sure they provide right direction so employees can align their individual goals with those of the organization (Armstrong, 2012). It is in this case that leaders need to share the entity’s vision with employees as well as aid them by presenting different ideas aimed at accomplishing entity goals. They can motivate employees through a set of guidelines. In most cases, the leaders use inspirational rewards and quotes to appreciate employees who are high performers. Leaders make sure they use performance appraisals for purposes of measuring employee output without bias (Rothstein & Burke, 2010). They make sure employees who are low performers are provided with training in order to improve their outputs. Leaders make sure the employees are offered challenging tasks that make it possible for them to use their innovation and creativity.

Strategic Management and Strategic Leadership

Continuous modification and implementation of various functions in an entity ensure organizational goals of an entity are achieved. The aim of strategic management is to ensure the right personnel is hired, the appropriate decisions made and efficient use of the resources of an organization. Often, strategic management is anchored on establishment of long term objectives and goals (Armstrong, 2012). What is more, management makes sure that all the views of stakeholders are used in the process of decision making. Every contribution made by the members is of great importance in enhancing an entity’s vision. Managers, under strategic management are supposed to formulate future expectations and also deal with existing challenges. Lastly, strategic managers also ensure there is exchange of values through balancing between usefulness and efficiency.

Strategic leaderships refers to a process of coordinating activities of various persons towards attaining a set of desired results. In this definition stewardship and vision are compulsory. In order to actualize strategic leadership, leaders are supposed to know as much as they possibly can about the external and internal environment. They are supposed to create visions that are in alignment with the goals of the organization having taken into consideration all environmental constraints. While in the process of developing the vision, leaders also make sure they avoid culture collision.

Good leaders can easily become managers but managers cannot make god leaders (Rothstein & Burke, 2010). Leaders are supposed to set expectations on what needs to be achieved and how it ought to be achieved. Leaders, in essence base their focus on vision of an institution as well as performance that are undertaken in the bid to realize the objectives of an organization. Strategic leadership might be viewed as a social activity in which case the society benefits from the organizations’ operations. Leaders with excellent educational backgrounds as well are well suited to solve the complex nature of business situations.

Positional Power for Managers

Management is dependent on positional power in which case, the powers are derived from status of the manager and authority within an organization. Management is based on rules, systems such as structures that are established by an organization (Jones & Jenkins, 2011). An excellent management is one that focuses on the enhancement of information control, seniority in job functions, resource control, rewards and punishment, expert advice and management of access to the public. Managers are more effective in their duties as a result of their formal position power. There are 3 major theories of management that facilitate understanding of business administration functions.

According to Fredrick Taylor’s scientific management, efficient techniques of undertaking a task to fruitful completion are through effective development, selection and adequate employee motivation based on scientific determinations (Forsell, 2004). Taylor believed the performance of workers was anchored on the personality of individual managers. These theories auger with McGregor’s Theory X where the employees are motivated by matters money. This, was however found out to be wring as employees were not motivated by money factors since they had needs as depicted by Abraham Maslow hierarchy of needs. According to Maslow, the most important needs for employees are those not already met.

The second theory of management theory is a classical organizational theory. The father of the theory is Henry Fayol. He defined management on the basis of 5 functions which include planning, organizing, commanding, coordinating and controlling (O’Neill, 2011). The classical management theory showed that administrative effectiveness was held on positional power which was held by a specific manager. Just like the theory by Taylor, Fayol’s theory argues that human beings are driven by psychological needs. Both theories equal the organization and individuals as part of a much larger organizational machine.

According to human movement, social and economic needs drive people to work. Through Elton Mayo, it was discovered there was positive correlation between human motivation and productivity of employees. Adequate motivation is supposed to be adopted by managers for purposes of making sure employees meet entity goals. Inadequate intrinsic and extrinsic motivation defeats goals of a workforce that is effective towards the accomplishment of a set of objectives.


The strength of leaders rests in the influence they possess over their followers. Additionally, the power of leaders is measured by how easily they can get others to commit to their goals. Their identity is never derived from positional powers as is the case with managers but from personal powers due to their interactions with people in an entity. The personal powers of leaders are created through widening their networks with the purpose of benefiting others. On top of this, these personal powers are also derived from excellent negotiation skills, offering employees praise, incorporating other operations, offering lines of communication and having adequate knowledge regarding the business (Forsell, 2004).

There are 3 theories which help answer the reason personal power helps a leader in the accomplishment of business goals. The trait approach is an indication that leaders are born and not made. The theory singles out that leaders are trained and natured in formative year by assuming different roles at school (O’Neil, 2011). The trait theory makes the assumption leaders grasp skills such as tea ethos and goal setting while they are young and this helps them become great leaders in future.

As a behavioral category, leadership incorporates behavior of leaders under various situations. Research shows that leaders are identified through 3 basic behavioral characteristics, which include, task oriented, excellent in relationship formation as well as incorporation of participation in their daily activities (Rothstein & Burke, 2010). According to theory of behavioral approach, employees’ satisfaction and higher performance is guaranteed through a personable participative approach from leaders.

The situational approach shows leaders are oriented to their followers as such, they are required to exercise their mandate on the basis of a given situation. Where followers are of low competence, the leader is supposed to use telling leadership style where objectives get clearly set out in order to avoid confusion. In cases where followers are mediocre, selling style is used where explanations of the decision are properly articulated (Jones & Jenkins, 2011). In circumstances where followers are highly competent but have erratic commitment, participative style of leadership is used. Lastly, delegating style is used where followers are fully trusted, committed and competent towards accomplishing tasks with minimal supervision.


A leader and a manager are two entities that are completely different where one can easily became a manager but a manager faced a hard time being a leader. In a sense, leadership and management are intertwined since they both have to lead followers to achieve set objectives. Both a leader and manager are supposed to possess adequate skills to handle different kinds of situations that arise in the process of conducting normal business operations (Armstrong, 2012). The first skill they are supposed to poses is interpersonal skills. This makes it possible for them to attain excellent rapport with their workers and followers as such, eliminating cases of resistance to change.

The relationship existing in leadership is that of leaders and their followers. In the same manner, in management, the relation is of the manager and subordinates (O’Neill 2011). In leadership, it is important for the leader to exercise influence on followers for meaningful changes that need to be undertaken. Managers are supposed to use their authority in order to make sure subordinates carry out their duties with utmost diligence. Leaders as well are associated with carrying out changes in organizations as they set the visions and make sure the followers work towards accomplishment of goals set (Forsell, 2004). Managers are great at coming up with strategies that are aimed at making sure the operations of the business are profitable.

Managers also focus on objectives such as production of services and goods that are affixed on positional power. Leaders as well zero in on people with the aim of motivating and inspiring them on the basis of personal powers.


Leaders and managers are supposed to work together in order to enhance the objectives set by an organization. Each of these people should have unique characteristics crucial to augment the goals of an organization. Personal qualities of the managers include emotional distance, insight into the organization, conformity and expert minded. Leaders are supposed to exude attention, open mindedness, insight into self, listening and non-conformity. Managers might not be good leaders though leaders can make good managers. For a leader to be respected and so they can realize their objectives, then it is crucial that they communicate with their followers.

Great relations between leader and followers improve cohesiveness in an institution and help reduce levels of resistance to change. Again a leader is supposed to position themselves to listen to plight of followers and make decisions that are rational. Communication lines should be open at all times to encourage mutual conversations aimed at accomplishing the goals and vision of the organization. Leaders should create changes and incorporate integrity culture in the organization.

Managers are supposed to maintain stability by creating an efficiency culture. The culture should be cultivated in the institution then passed to new recruits. Poor relations with subordinates cause friction and defeat realization of strategic policies formulated by managers.

Managers and leaders work collectively to set goals and ensure workers are well trained to handle complex undertakings in the organization. Managers also depend on position power to effect changes while leaders depend on personal power to ensure the goals are achieved within the timeframe set.



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Forssell, D. C. (2004). Management and leadership: Insight for effective practice. Hayward, California: Living Control Systems Publishing.

Jones, R., & Jenkins, F. (2011). Key tools and techniques in management and leadership of the allied health professions. London: Radcliffe Publishing.

O’Neill, A. (2011). Manager to leader: Skills and insights for a successful transition. Sydney, N.S.W: CCH Australia.

Rothstein, M. G., & Burke, R. J. (2010). Self-Management and Leadership Development. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publication.