It was once said, though I can't remember who by, that a civilized man can act like a barbarian, but a barbarian can never act like a civilized man. It occurs to me that the same might be said comparing leaders and managers. A leader can perform management functions, and often must. A manager - if that's only what they are - is incapable of acting like a leader. The challenge we face - in law enforcement, all facets of public safety and, many times, in general business as well - is that it is often the managers who get promoted instead of the leaders. Why? Well, leaders, by their very nature, have an aggressive streak. They may be diplomatic; they may exercise tact; they may be subtle... but they have an aggressive side. That aggressiveness is necessary to being an effective leader. It can also lead to the occasional mistake. If you own a company and you have to choose between two guys to promote, which do you choose? The apparently calm manager who never takes risks but rarely makes mistakes? Or the leader who has made mistakes but whom everyone seems to want to work hard for? In our world where the almighty dollar reigns supreme many business owners and managers promote the manager. In law enforcement, however... indeed, in any profession where people might be required to face conflict with courage and determination, leaders are required. Managers just don't inspire people to follow them into the fray. As a matter of fact, based on my experience, the manager is the guy who says, "I'll stay here and watch how well you do." That translates into, "I don't mind risking your life, but I'm going to stay right here safe and sound." In virtually endeavor mankind chooses to pursue, leadership is required. Yes, there is a place for managers - but the trick is knowing which position requires a manager and which requires a leader. Once you've worked for a manager when you truly needed leadership you'll know the difference and never feel the same again. What do you think?