Boss vs Leader - What's the difference?

Boss vs Leader Source: Flickr

According to Wikipedia:

A boss is a person in charge or a supervisor.

However, being a supervisor doesn’t necessarily mean that the person has good leadership skills. I have friends & acquaintances who complain their boss whereas there are several people who praise their boss.

Most people resign because they have a boss who likes to rule their office with fear. Their staff will perform well, but only because they’re too scared not to! However, you shouldn’t run your office the same way Cersei Lannister runs Westeros. Sure, fear does make people get the job done, but it certainly doesn’t make them want to work hard for you.

Leader, on the other hand, inspires people to work by acknowledging the diverse talent and will encourage members to develop and leverage them to accomplish company objectives. Furthermore, they make sure everyone is aligned and strives for the company’s vision. In turn, they nurture mutual respect between everyone within the organization.

Boss directs, leader guides

A leader understands the caliber of their team members and wants them to find a solution. They are optimistic about their competence and guides them to get the solution. Boss assign tasks and provide guidance on how to accomplish them because they are more bothered about the task than the improvement of his team.

Boss creates followers, leader create leaders

Since boss is driven by results and not by the path they foster to create more followers who work are build in a mechanism of taking orders and execute them without understanding the goal of it. Leaders, however, creates more leaders by creating an environment of optimism and self-confidence to handle a task. People will understand the goal of a task when the idea is shared with them.

Boss takes the credit, leader gives the credit

A boss will always take the credit for the accomplishment done by the team. They will want their name on top the report will be always on the podium and will always boast about it even if they have done zero contribution. Leaders, however, will always give the due credit to his team or anyone specific. Similar to M.S.Dhoni who always stands behind the team whenever India have won the trophy. A leader will never ask for his credit nor will overshadow someone else’s credit. Even if on a podium, he will make sure to acknowledge the contribution by the team.

Boss blames, leader takes responsibility

If things go south, the boss will be the first one to find someone to put the blame on. They will make excuses when put in a stressful situation and try to blame someone to wipe off the dust from them. Leaders, on the other hand, take the responsibility. They are willing to take the risk and try new things even when they fail miserably, and if they fail they take the ownership instead making excuses or playing the blame game. A leader always reacts with certainty & confidence when under a stressful situation.

Boss critizes, leaders give feedback

Feedback plays a very important role in the development of an individual. However, criticizing the same guys breaks his morale and demotivates. The boss always tends to criticize the work done by his/her employees. This is mainly because the end result is the goal for them. They want to see the product or service conveyed effectively to clients and consumers, resulting in higher numbers but they miss out the growth. Leaders focus on the growth of the team. They give their feedback to improve their teammates because they believe in them and competence.

In short, try to be a leader, not a boss. Because being a boss you will just foster an environment of stress and insecurity. Try to build a healthy workplace and grow along with others.