I like reading everyone’s perspectives on leaders vs managers.
A “manager” to me is a person who focuses on organization, tasks and structure. Managers give direction, sets rules, assigns tasks and seen as an authority figure. They set the goals or deadlines.
A “leader” is more of a personality trait. Anyone can be a leader. They are the person motivating, guiding and encouraging.
There is a difference between the two as a person can be a manager who follow process or policies but when it comes to leading a team, they lack the traits to motivate or guide others. One of the best managers I’ve had in my career has kept a balance of both managing the working environment but leading the team to success and checking in with everyone to see growth in the team. They’d reach out when you needed support or motivation.
There are people on my current project that although they are not in positions of authority have great motivating and leadership skills. They are knowledgeable, confident and improve the workflow.