Difference Between Tasks and Duties

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: April 30, 2023


Difference Between Tasks and Duties

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We all have some the other responsibilities in life that we need to fulfill. English language as everyone in this world would agree is a complex language with a lot of grammatical arrangements. Without the proper usage of grammar, it would hardly make sense and sentences could get completely wrong. The English language is very diverse and has thousands of words that mean different things. But some words have similar meanings yet are significantly different. An example of such words is Tasks and Duties, if looked at with a normative eye; one would think that the two terms have the same meanings. But these two terms are considerably different if seen with a critical eye. A task is a chunk of work that is done as a part of a person's responsibility that is included in it. Duties are compulsory or obligatory for a person to do.

Tasks vs. Duties

The main difference between these two terms is that "task" is a part of our life or a job that is assigned to us. Whereas "duty or duties" is a responsibility a task that a person is obliged to complete no matter what.

Some examples that could explain this better would be studying or giving good education, food, shelter to children is the duty of every adult who has kids. A task can be something easy or difficult depending on the scale of the assigned work. Some examples would be doing the dishes, cooking a meal, mopping the floor, or bigger tasks like managing an event, etc. while this may sound a little confusing the below table will help distinguish between these two terms more clearly.

Difference Between Tasks and Duties in Tabular Form

Basis of differentiation Tasks Duties
Denotation It is part of a person's responsibility and has been allocated to them by another person to fulfill in a certain amount of time. It ethically ties a person and makes that person obligated to do specific things that are his/her obligation.
Description Tasks are more particularly since the individual understands what he has to accomplish and when he needs to do it. Duties are thought to be universal and are quite similar to responsibility.
Period in which they are completed Tasks must be accomplished within a defined and limited time frame. Duties are supposed to be a long-term evaluation rather than a specific period.
Part A task is typically a component of a job or an assignment. Duty is not an element of work or anything else, but rather something that somebody is required to perform.
Example If you work as a manager in a store, you must keep the store well and handle the customers daily. It is your duty as a coach to guarantee that all of your students perform well in their competitions.
What is it? Binding force  Authority
Reflects Respect or obedience, to the work, rules, superiors, or elders. Culpability for the presentation or non-performance of something.


Tasks demands sacrifice of self-interest


Duties demand trustworthiness and loyalty


How they arise?                        Imputed Shouldered



What are Tasks?

A task is an everyday occurrence in our life. Work is derived from the Latin word "Taxare," which means "to impose taxes," which is comparable to filling out tax reports, which are many times called occupations. When speaking in formal terms, a task is one that must be accomplished within a specific time frame or deadline. A task can also be divided into assignments if it is used in an office, corporation, or educational institution. It is usually a part of a larger project. Talking about simple tasks like doing home chores really can't be divided into assignments. As a task requires completion within a given deadline of the fixed time, it requires a certain amount of coordination with others if working in a team or group. Even doing tasks alone, requires to resolve, and concentration to sit and complete the work. Tasks are usually difficult or unpleasant to complete.

Some examples of tasks used in sentences that will make it clearer to understand;

  1. The students were given the task of cleaning the classrooms.
  2. In, football every player has a task to do.
  3. I have some tasks to complete for this assignment.

The task is also used as a transitive verb

  1. The people were tasked to clean their locality

There is a distinction to be made between a responsibility and a task. "Take part in teamwork," for example, is a duty; "attend staff meetings" is a task. "Communication with clients" is a duty; "monthly magazine writing" is a chore. "Obtaining market exposure" is a duty; "publish articles for trade publications" is a task. "Create media contacts" is a duty; "produce news releases" is a job.

Many synonyms have also been derived from the word task like

  1. Chore, which means a piece of work, which can be difficult with the objective of achieving a goal.
  2. Multitasking is doing multiple tasks at the same time.
  3. Subtask, it's a portion of a supplementary multifarious task.
  4. A task force is a unit that is set up for a task.
  5. Taskmaster is a person who is assigned to give tasks, responsibilities, and mainly difficult ones. They also supervise the work rigorously.
  6. Take to task

What are Duties?

Duty has been derived from the old French word "Deu" which means "owing." Duty is an obligation or a commitment to something, someone, or yourself. It is an expectation to do an activity by default which means that usually, no one assigns someone work to do. It's a universal thing that is done by people. Morals, respect, and ethics can be labeled as duties. As it denotes moral obligation, it signifies an active emotion of doing something. Once a person engrosses themselves with some duty or they have been delegated with a duty, then that person effusively obligates himself to it. Duties would be something that is created by law, which is mentioned in constitutions all around the world in an organized manner. Sometimes not doing these duties can also lead to punishment.

In the instance of duty, a person will be immersed in the work without regard for his or her own self-interest. A person's obligations as a citizen are numerous. They must adhere to the provisions of the constitution. Everyone has fulfilled the job and responsibility standards. Duty is a moral commitment to something or someone, but on the other hand responsibility is a circumstance of being responsible for something. Duties are derived from four components, according to Cicero. Human beings, one's specific place, one's character, and one's moral expectations all contribute to duty. In his classic piece 'On duty,' he presented his obligation concept. Duty, as it pertains to moral commitment, represents an active experience of doing something. When a person participates in a task or is entrusted with a duty, that person completely commits to it. In the event of duty, the person will be engaged in an action that is not motivated by self-interest. A person's responsibilities as a citizen of a country are numerous. They must follow the constitution.

Responsibilities and duties are fairly similar, even though the fact that they are completely distinct. An obligation may be defined as a person's ability to do anything they choose, without being told. It is a person’s responsibility to accomplish the project that has been sent to them. With responsibility, one takes on the task of completing and completing the assignment successfully. A person is solely accountable for all work and its consequences. If you have a duty, you are responsible for the entire project. Responsibility may also be described as a set of life principles that one should adhere to. It is the responsibility of the parents to give decent education to their offspring.

Relation and contrast between responsibility and duty are mentioned in the below sentences:-

The following statements illustrate the relationships and parallels between responsibility and work: -

  1. Work is a moral commitment to something or someone, whereas responsibility is a state of responsibility.
  2. Because work is a moral commitment, it demonstrates a practical feeling of success.
  3. If it is a job, the individual will be immersed in the task without regard for self-interest.
  4. Work is defined as the ability to behave deliberately and independently. It is the obligation to complete the mission that has been sent to you.
  5. By committing, a person accepts responsibility for all labor and its consequences. Like Parents should ensure that their children receive a proper education, or they get adequate medical attention when they are not well.
  6. Once a person is actively involved in a task or has been assigned a task, he or she is dedicated to it.

Some examples of duties that are performed by people:-

  1. A care nurse's role in a hospital
  2. It is a doctor's responsibility to attend to his patients.

1- A tour of duty is a term used to describe active military service.

  1. Moral or legal compulsion: It is your responsibility to speak the truth.
  2. Taxes levied by the government and levied on citizens
  3. The request for something for a certain function; the drawing-room table also serves as a workstation.
  4. An amount of proficiency is articulated as the extent of effort done per unit of vigor used.
  5. The total amount of water necessary to irrigate a certain area to develop a specific crop from planting to harvest.

The act of performing duties can include one's self-interest or even numerous sacrifices also. According to a roman philosopher, duties come from different sources:

  1. “A result of being a human."
  2. “A result of one's character."
  3. "A result of one's moral expectation."
  4. "A result of one's particular dwelling in his or her life."

Main Differences between Tasks and Duties in Points

  1. It is well understood that the main distinction between the two is that a task is something that a person is assigned or asked to do for a specific period of time and possibly in exchange; on the other hand, duty is something that a person is not asked to do but is obligated to do because he is responsible for his actions.
  2. The job is little in comparison to the work to be completed in the allowed time. And duty is the employee's responsibility to execute or fulfill specific responsibilities and duties such as a duty.
  3. Once a person accepts or is entrusted with a duty, he or she is committed; the labor is temporary, and the individual needs simply to perform what is asked.
  4. They then engage in such activities without regard for themselves. A person has numerous obligations as a citizen of a country, yet in occupations, people are simply interested in their gain.
  5. Tasks must be pretty direct and completed on time, yet the work is deemed routine.


From the aforementioned article, it should thus be concluded that Tasks and duties are two different nouns with completely dissimilar connotations. The difference between the two pivots on the question of "why did I do this" the responsibility in a task is always high. One responsibility can carry up to five to six tasks. If one is to eliminate one task from the responsibility then that could lead to the deduction of several tasks. Whereas a task is a piece of work performed as part of one's obligation, a responsibility is something that someone is forced or required to complete, and it is something that morally binds a person. Tasks are more particularly since the individual knows what he has to do and when he needs to do it, whereas duties are thought to be generic and are quite similar to responsibilities. Tasks have a definite and restricted period in which they must be accomplished, whereas duties are thought to be a long-term assessment that does not have a time restriction.



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"Difference Between Tasks and Duties." Diffzy.com, 2024. Sat. 02 Mar. 2024. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-tasks-and-duties-108>.

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