Life · Profession

Boss vs. Leader

People nowadays transfer to another company because of many reasons. It can be the working atmosphere, the demands in the work, the pressure and challenge one must confront, the system, the compensation and benefits the company can cater, or the surrounding people particularly the co-workers and the people who are in authority.

Based on what I have observed, majority of them lose their appetite or the enthusiasm. Hence, that leaves them with no other choice but to transfer to a different working environment wherein he or she fits or has found a second home. Sadly, we cannot deny the fact that there is a comparison from the past mentors to the present who made you who you are today.

The attitudes you have when it comes to your leadership are based on your past mentors. Like a baton passed to another person full of potential. But do not get me wrong, not all of your attitudes at present were based from the past but majority of them were the things you learned that you do not want others to experience.

This is also applicable to students.

What your teacher imparts on your mind makes you who you are and what you will become someday. The ideals instilled on your mind makes you either competitive or passive especially during the pivotal stages of your elementary years. It molds you to be the finest so you can contribute in the near future not just for your family but for your country as well.

As a student, it is good thing to know that you have chances to bounce back on the right time so you can shine and have your “this-is-my-moment”. On the things you’ve learned, it opens up your mind on the mistakes you’ve made. The best part of that is realizing the things you should not commit the second time around, because sometimes second chances are make or break state.

Now when it comes to leadership, there is a huge discrepancy between a leader and a boss. Not only on how they function per se, but on how they train and interact with the most significant group of people, the soon-to-be leaders who will continue to uphold the legacy left behind.

Based upon my research, I noted the common areas in which these leaders are different on extreme degrees:

  • Accomplishing tasks
    • A boss usually say, “do your task. It is your job!”
    • A leader will say, “can I ask you a favor? Will you do this particular task?”

The difference shows that a boss manipulates you and tells you what to do. Like it or not, some of them are just sitting down on a comfortable chair at their office while you are exhausted giving your all since you are paid to do your job.

A leader on the other hand asks you with grace and wide consideration if you can insert the task on your list. If not, it is fine for them since there are options to choose from. And at the end, the conversation comes to a conclusion with a smile and no big deals.

  • Achievements
    • When it comes to the commendation from the guests or other people concerned, a boss will take all the credit.
    • On the other hand, a leader recognizes the mastermind who crafted the plan which was done with a great output.

If in case a particular event was held successful beyond one’s wildest imagination, the boss acts like he or she did everything with no support from other involved people. In a few words if I may say, the boss takes it all and nothing is given to the soon-to-be leaders.

A leader, who is responsible of approving a blueprint gives way to one of the trained soon-to-be leaders and gives appreciation plus a strong commendation made in public for the efforts and commitment towards excellence.

  • Attitude
    • A boss inspires pressure to people especially during the busy season.
    • A leader generates enthusiasm to accomplish a task with a smile on everyone’s face.

I am confident to say that before a person joins a company, he or she is trained to work with grace and class under pressure.

But what if someone adds insult to the injury? What makes the situation worse is that your boss is the culprit of increasing the tension and anxiety on the working environment. Sometimes you cannot concentrate or you cannot give what you can offer because of fear that prohibits you to go beyond the distance?

A true leader inspires his or her people to work under pressure. How? The appointed leader leads by example. He or she is not impressing anyone in the workplace but he or she does what needs to be done. No pressure is given and enthusiasm is generated instantly to drive others to be active on working as well.

Remember, the leader is responsible to make everyone productive. Let me compare a leader and a boss to a tree. If the branches of the tree bears fruit, then the trunk is healthy (that’s what makes a leader). But if the branches are barren and the tree withers, then the trunk is dead (that’s how you define a boss.)

  • Handling failure
    • A boss blames everyone for coming up short on the set targets and goals.
    • A leader will blame no one except for himself or herself without pin pointing a finger to the people he or she trains.

True leaders are tested once they failed.

Bosses will automatically yell and tells straightforward to your face without consideration on your feelings on the wrong things you did. A sudden outburst of emotion will take place and no explanation will be acceptable or valid.

Leaders will take a huge leap of faith and take the risk of taking the weight of failure on his or her shoulders. Not only he or she admits the mistake but he or she will encourage everyone in the group to be resilient and never let the history of failure (parallel situations or alike events) happen once more. He or she takes that particular chapter as an avenue of learning.

As a teacher, I am always telling my students that if they failed in life then “I failed to do my part as your second father to guide you on how to live the life.” Sometimes the simplest of words are enough to inspire even the young ones to learn and not to be humiliated.

  • Handling people
    • A boss uses people to accomplish the Mission, Vision, and Philosophy of the company.
    • A leader trains people to develop and to unleash the hidden potentials deep within.

Unfortunately, the boss is work-oriented. There is nothing bad on notching the prize you are craving. However, there are some predicaments wherein everything was just made out of professionalism but the existence of enhancing one’s skill is no more.

Fortunately, if you have a leader who trains people to become the best then you are on the right track. Leaders are always people-oriented and work-oriented, both equal and both observed at the same time. Not only you learn every detail of how to be excellent, but you are also exposed on variety of options on upgrading one’s self.

  • Output
    • A boss wants everything to be perfect. Perfection is a must!
    • A leader wants excellence because perfection does not really exist at all.

Bosses demands perfection!

It is a tragic to hear someone from above to impose perfection at all times. Ideally, everyone can brag that if others can be perfect, so they can. Actually, the word perfection is a standard that is way too hard to achieve. You need to have a God-like status in order to make a blemish-free activity or idea successful.

Leaders are practical and always makes an assessment based from reality. They do not aim for perfection but they are targeting excellence in all works so that the satisfaction is highly guaranteed within and outside the group.

  • Work as a team
    • Boss informs everyone that it is all about him or her.
    • Leader’s mind is set on we work together as one.

A boss is like a movie star, he or she wants to be alone in the spot light while others who worked hard at the back are left unrecognized for what they have encountered. No one can say no to his or her suggestions, like a robot you have no other choice but to agree with your master.

A leader is like a director. He lets the people shine bright like a diamond and functions as one integrated unit. Not only they excel in terms of their output but the treatment to each other is like a family and the bond is as strong as that of a friendship. If someone needs assistance, everybody stops in order to lend a helping hand. Nobody gets left behind and nobody gets way too advanced, they are all aligned on the journey until it is all said and done.

At the end of the day, these two people made an enormous contribution on who you are today. It is just that if you want to become a boss or a leader, you will let your mouth close and let the walk do the talk.

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit.

Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.”

– Philippians 2:3


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