Nice post from Scott Berkun about misunderstanding the project manager role, both by outsiders and some PMs:
Our culture does not think of movie directors, executive chefs, astronauts, brain surgeons, or rock stars as project managers, despite the fact that much of what these cool, high profile occupations do is manage projects. The difference is these individuals would never describe themselves primarily as project managers. They’d describe themselves as directors, architects or rock stars first, and as a projects manager or team leaders second. They’re are committed first to the output, not the process. And the perspective many PMs have is the opposite: they are committed first to the process, and their status in the process, not the output.
I don’t know about rock stars (maybe rock stars’ managers?), but the more I learn about film, movie directors seem a very good comparison.