I don’t think the attempts to separate leadership and management are useful. I read plenty of things that are variations on Peter Drucker’s:
“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”
A manager that is not concerned about doing the right things is a lousy manager. And a leader that doesn’t care about doing things right is a lousy leader.
Another theme of this contrasting type quote says some version of:
“Managers care about efficiency and leaders care about effectiveness”
A manager who doesn’t strive to be effective is also a lousy manager. It is also odd to suppose the detached leader (the type that lets the manager deal with the mundane while they dream), one that doesn’t concern themselves with customer focus, value chains, going to the gemba really has a clue about effectiveness. The idea seems mainly to view a manager is a cog looking at some tiny process and making it efficient without understanding the organization as a system or value chains or customer focus.
I think, the main problem is all of the attempts to contrast leaders and managers. Much of the time people are saying managers don’t do things they certainly should be doing.
The desire to express how leadership traits can be used by those without organizational authority are useful. Discussion of how certain traits can be seen as within the domain of leadership I suppose may be useful (it can help our minds see how various traits and practices combine to help get results – and we can categorize these under “leadership”).
Leaders that are primarily “big thinkers” and motivators without a clue about how to actually do the things they advocate (the model of “managers” deal with the implementation with blinders to the system while “leaders” are “above the fray”) is not useful in my opinion. It does note a somewhat common practice (in organizations today) but not one that is wise. Separating leadership from the gemba is not wise. Separating leadership from a deep understanding of customers is not wise. Separating leadership from how the organization actually works is not wise.
Plenty of others seem to disagree with my opinion though, there are many articles, blog posts, podcasts, talks… on separating leadership from management.