With all these theories and research on leadership in general and project management in particular, what can we conclude? From my personal experience and years of research, ten patterns of actions distinguish project leaders from project managers:
Allow me to explain. I refer to the above as patterns of actions. They are patterns because they do not always occur in the same level of detail or sequence. At the same time, their significance is immense and can determine how effective project managers are in leading their projects to a successful conclusion.
They are actions because, unless applied, they are useless. The actions become nothing more than theoretical constructs or platitudes without substance. When applied, however, projects inevitably achieve great results.
Effective project managers are the people who enable others to achieve great results by applying the patterns of action. However, project managers must exercise judgment when applying these patterns. They must determine the level of detail and sequence of each pattern. It is this willingness and ability to make such a judgment that, I believe, separates project leaders from project managers.