Leadership (Part I)

While the principles of leadership have interested me since I was young, I’ve been thinking more about these principles in recent months.

That plus this picture I recently saw floating around on Facebook comparing the difference between a boss and a leader inspired me to write about this topic.

The content of the visual is more or less spot on, but it’s also quite ugly. So I thought I’d create my own visual for posterity:

Difference between a boss and a leader.

For the less visually-inclined, the difference between a boss and a leader can be summarised as thus:

  1. A boss drives employees, whereas a leader coaches them.
  2. A boss depends on authority, whereas a leader utilises goodwill to get things done.
  3. A boss evokes fear, whereas a leader generates enthusiasm.
  4. A boss says “I”, whereas a leader says “We”.
  5. A boss merely places the blame on someone when there’s a breakdown; a leader fixes the breakdown to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
  6. A boss knows how it’s done but a leader shows how it’s done.
  7. A boss uses people but a leader develops people.
  8. A boss takes credit whereas a leader gives credit where it’s due.
  9. A boss commands; a leader asks (difference is in the tone of instruction).
  10. A boss says “Go” but a leader says “Let’s go”.

Is this true for you?

In any case, come back again tomorrow for part 2.

About the author

Laremy Lee

A versatile educator, writer and editor, Laremy Lee (李庭辉) has the uncanny knack of being one of the few among his generation in Singapore who crafts compelling stories in different genres.

View all posts