Boss vs Leader: what's the difference?

Aug 18, 2022

The difference between a boss and a leader is an important one, but it can be hard to see. A boss tells you what to do and how to do it, while a leader helps you realise your goals. The best bosses are great leaders and the worst bosses—the ones who make employees miserable—are terrible leaders. Here's what we mean by the terms "boss" and "leader" so that you can become the best one possible:

Bosses require obedience.

Bosses are in control. They give orders and make the decisions, but whilst this isn’t ALWAYS a negative trait, it can have negative repercussions.

By handing our directives without bringing your team along for the journey reduces motivation and hinders employees from feeling like they can make a meaningful contribution to the workplace.

Leaders inspire action.

Leadership is about getting people to believe in themselves and to do things they wouldn't normally do. It involves getting people to do things they don't want to do and helping them understand how the task benefits them in the long run. Leadership is also about getting people to perform tasks that may feel underprepared for as a means to help educate and grow their potential.

Bosses want to be feared.

Bosses want to be feared. They may say they want respect, but it's fear they're after.

When you're the boss, your employees are supposed to obey you and do what you say. But that's not always easy; it's much easier if they fear their boss' wrath (or even just dislike him enough) that they'll do anything he says without question. Fear of punishment keeps employees in line more effectively than any other method because people who are afraid of getting fired will never do anything risky or potentially disruptive—even if it might help their company succeed!

Leaders want trust.

Leaders are the people who take a step back, assess the situation and make decisions based on what is best for their team. Leaders are trustworthy, transparent and consistent in their actions. If a boss is not good at leading then it can cause problems in the workplace as people will feel that they are not being treated fairly or consistently by management.

Bosses command loyalty.

Loyalty is not just a one-way street. It's earned, and it's not blind or unconditional.

As a boss, you have the opportunity to earn loyalty because your employees know that you have their backs—even when they make mistakes or do things wrong. If an employee feels that they can't trust their boss, they might be less likely to go out of their way for them in the future.

Leaders earn it.

Leadership is a skill that can be learned, although it's not something that comes easily for everyone. Leaders earn the respect of their followers by inspiring them to work together toward a common goal. To do this well, leaders need to set a vision and inspire others to achieve it, while also being willing to set aside some of their interests in order to serve those they lead.

Leaders are often thought of as having “charisma” or “character” but not all leaders need these qualities to lead effectively. The best leaders are servant leaders who empower others rather than trying to control people or situations.

So how do you become a great leader? How do you know if you're ready for promotion? Here's what experts say:

Knowing how to be a good leader can help you achieve your goals.

Leadership is a skill that can be learned, and it's important to realize that leadership isn't something you're born with. Good leaders are good communicators—they know how to get their team members on board with the vision for their company or organization. Leadership is about inspiring people to follow you, whether it's because they believe in your goals or because they trust your ability to lead them there.

The key takeaway from this article is not just that good leaders are different from bad bosses, but also that there is a lot of overlap between the two. Many great leaders were once terrible bosses (and vice versa). However, with the right mindset, you can learn how to change for the better and become someone who inspires action instead of demanding obedience or barking orders at your employees.

Keep Learning, 

Kobi Simmat.

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