A Leader vs. A Boss

Difference between a Leader and a Boss 

The terms leader and boss are often mistaken as the same, and therefore used interchangeably. Though both have authority over others, they are still very much different from each other.

Defining a Leader

A leader is someone who is interactive and can motivate his followers. Instead of bossing them around, he sets an example by working among them, accepting criticisms, and challenging them to become better at what they do. A leader is admired and respected not only because of his position but also because of his character and ability.

Defining a Boss

A boss, unlike a leader, is someone who just orders other people to do what needs to be done. He is close-minded most of the time and does not accept suggestions from his followers. Instead of being admired like a leader, he is mostly followed out of fear and seniority.

As the saying goes, “A leader can be a boss but a boss can rarely become a leader”. Although they are similar in that they are both in charge of a certain project and they both know what needs to be done, a leader is more often than not more effective than a boss. This is because a leader inspires his followers, generally making them happy and content with what they do.

In summary:

  • The terms leader and boss are often interchanged
  • A leader is someone who can make his followers better people while a boss is someone who just orders them around
  • A leader is respected due mainly to his character and ability while a boss is respected because of fear and seniority
  • A leader can be a boss but a boss can rarely become a leader

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