Are you a boss or a leader?
I hate the term boss. Whenever someone refers to me as their boss I almost feel like I’m doing something wrong as a leader. I want to ask forgiveness for making them think I’m the boss.
There are so many differences between a boss and a leader.
A boss seems to have all the answers, even if they really don’t.
A leader solicits input, leads a collaborative effort, to arrive at the right answer.
A boss tells people what to do.
A leader enlists the support of others.
A boss can be intimidating – if only by title.
A leader may challenge people, but will encourage – even during correction.
A boss dictates their own way.
A leader delegates the way to others.
A boss demands results.
A leader inspires others to succeed.
A boss controls through systems and processes.
A leader spurs ideas, creativity, and ingenuity.
A boss manages closely guarded policies.
A leader enables change, adapting policies as needed.
There is only one boss in any organization.
The best organizations have many leaders.
You have to pay someone to follow a boss.
People follow a leader willingly.
In fairness, there are times even the best leaders have to be the boss. Even the “bad guy” boss – at least in other people’s perception. Being a leader doesn’t mean you allow poor quality of work to prevail. There are times a leader has to micromanage. We need good systems and processes.
But, whenever possible, I much prefer to be a leader.
This article originally appeared here.