7 Differences Between A Boss And A Leader.
Hello, Life Changers!
In this post I will be talking about the 7 main differences between a boss and a leader, so if you want to know if you are working for a boss or a leader, or simply want to know which one are you, keep reading this post and find out.
Before we start with the differences, we need to know what does it mean to be a leader and what does it mean to be a boss, after all, you can’t understand the differences between two things if you don’t know what those things are, so let's begin!
DEFINITION OF BOSS:
According to the dictionary, a boss is “a person in charge of a worker or organization”, so basically someone who holds a superior rank or position in a company, team, or organization.
DEFINITION OF LEADER:
According to the dictionary, a leader is “a person who leads or commands a group, organization, or country”, so basically someone who leads, drives, and/or commands a group of people towards a plan, a goal, an idea, or a cause.
Now that we know the meaning of both of these words lets go a little more in depth on the 7 main differences between a boss and a leader.
NUMBER 1: Respect.
You may have noticed, or even felt a need to show respect to your superior at work, maybe it was because you admired, liked, and sympathized with that superior, or maybe, you were just trying to protect your job, so basically you gave that respect out of fear and necessity, and that is one of the biggest differences between a boss and a leader.
While a Boss gets the things done by his/her subordinates in the way he/she wants by telling them what they have to do and how they have to do it, a leader will tell them what the goal is and brainstorm with them to build a plan to reach that goal successfully together as a team, giving his/her subordinates a voice and a chance to showcase their abilities in order to grow and succeed in their careers.
So when we talk about respect, we always think of it as something that has to be earned, and that is one of the differences between a boss and a leader, because a boss receives respect from his/her subordinates not because it has been earned by building trust, confidence, comfort, and growth within the team, but instead by creating and environment of authority, power, and fear for themselves, impacting negatively in the environment of his/her subordinates.
NUMBER 2: Team.
For this point we will be going back for a bit to point 1.
Have you ever been to a job interview where the manager, HR Director, or whoever was conducting the interview asked: “Why do you want to work for this company?”
Well, let me tell you that if the answer is “YES” then whoever was conducting that interview is very far from being a leader. Let me build a little more on that:
As I said on point 1, while a Boss gets the things done by his/her subordinates in the way he/she wants by telling them what they have to do and how they have to do it, a leader will tell them what the goal is and brainstorm with them to build a plan to reach that goal successfully together as a team, giving his/her subordinates a voice and a chance to showcase their abilities in order to grow and succeed in their career.
So the actual way a REAL leader would ask that question would be: “Why do you want to work with this company?”Notice the difference? By changing the “FOR” for the “WITH” it is being implied that you won’t necessarily be told what to do and how to do it, but instead, you will be told what to achieve and then given the opportunity to work with the team to make that happen successfully.
NUMBER 3: Power.
As I said in the previous points, a leader is the head of a team, and works with them to achieve a common goal, while a boss, is the head of bunch of ants that are expected to work for as long as it is needed to make the boss look good enough for whoever is above him/her. So if I wanted to explain this idea as a questions it would be: “Does he/she enforce power over the people to achieve a personal/professional goal, or, does he/she develop trust and confidence towards him/her, by the people to achieve a common personal or professional goal?”.
NUMBER 4: Attitude.
Attitude is one of the key differences between every boss and every leader. Check this out the next time you go to a restaurant or any retail store and see the behavior of the manager around his/her workers. A Boss is always arrogant, and keeps his/her chest out, chin up, and walks straight looking down on those who are below them, and walk around supervising and giving instructions, while a Leader, will always have his/her sight at the same level as the workers, keep a relaxed position and walk around checking on his/her people to see if there is anything to help with. The vocabulary and the way to treat subordinates is also different for a boss and for a leader, in fact, a boss will use strong and sometimes offensive vocabulary, a high volume, and a very serious attitude to call out workers who have done something wrong, while a leader, will sit down with the subordinate, and in a soft tone, with a very polite manner and kind gesture will try to figure out what the root of the issue was in order to present the factual information of the error to the subordinate and teach a lesson in a positive and constructive way, so basically, a boss will yell, a leader will teach.
NUMBER 5: Credit.
Credit can be many things. In this case, credit, according to the dictionary means: “public acknowledgement for someone as a participant in the production, or creation of something, or positive involvement on a specific task”, and here we find a lot of room to find differences between a boss and a leader. First of all, if you are dealing with a boss, whenever you do something right instead of getting acknowledged by him/her on your performance, you will be treated as if it was something normal, and don’t get me wrong, it should be the normal thing, to try and do your best every time, but that doesn’t mean that sometimes we can’t do things better than others, so when that time comes and credit for a good idea, a very difficult task that was successfully completed or even a failed attempt to do something extremely difficult after a very hard work to get it done, is not given to you, you are probably dealing with a boss, even more, if that boss instead of giving you the credit, or even letting your success pass by without any acknowledgment, will take that credit for themselves. A leader will never do that, after all, some of the main qualities of a leader, are fairness, but we will get to that in a moment.
NUMBER 6: Opportunity.
Sometimes we apply for a job out of need, some other times, because we have the opportunity to apply for the job we’ve always wanted, whatever the case may be, you should always get the chance to showcase yourself and grow. Leaders and bosses differ in this, because while a boss can consider growth and success a matter of luck, a real leader, will consider it pure fairness towards someone who has done and outstanding job, but not only bosses will call it luck, they will also give the opportunities to grow to those who they feel closer to on a personal level, friends, family, that are given a job without deserving it. So if you are doing a truly outstanding job, or bring great ideas to the table when your superior at work ask you to, and you don’t get recognized for that, and don’t get a chance to grow in the team, then you are probably dealing with very unfair bosses, and trust me, you want to stay away from them as much as possible, because eventually, it will get worse.
NUMBER 7: Fairness.
We are going back to the last two points for this one. As we said in point 5, fairness is all about getting what you deserve after working hard for it, and whether you succeeded or not, you should always get credit for an outstanding performance, as well as getting the same opportunities as anyone else to grow within a team based on your overall performance on your job, but fairness can be a little bit more than that, fairness is also getting the chance to speak up and explain when a mistake has been made, or perhaps, getting the opportunity to express yourself freely in regard to a situation that has happened between you and a co-worker or a superior without being bothered in any way for it, or even being treated with the same respect that you give.
These are the 7 main differences between a boss and a leader.
Thank you very much for reading this post, I really hope you liked it and that you come back for more!
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