Accelerate Leadership Development to Unleash Potential

Accelerate Leadership Development to Unleash Potential
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How to Accelerate Leadership Development to Unleash Potential
Effective leadership matters.  According to Gallup, leaders directly influence 70% of team engagement and performance. Unfortunately, the vast majority of leaders receive no leadership training prior to being promoted, and most companies rate their leadership development programs as ineffective.  To thrive and adapt, organizations must prioritize the acceleration of effective leadership development.

To accelerate leadership development, organizations must take a multifaceted approach that includes strategic buy-in, mindset shifts, action learning, and cultural accountability. By prioritizing these strategies, organizations can unleash the full potential of their leaders to navigate the speed and complexity required to effectively lead people, functions, and businesses.

4 Ways to Accelerate Leadership Development
Done right, leadership development is not merely about leadership succession planning to cultivate individuals to fill key roles; it’s about nurturing a culture of growth, resilience, and innovation. So, how can you ensure that your leadership development programs have a meaningful impact on your people and your organization? Here are four actionable strategies to make leadership development a top priority:

  1. Ensure Strategic Buy-In
    We know from our training measurement research that impactful corporate training and development initiatives must be highly relevant to three key stakeholders:

    (1) The Target Audience
    (2) Their Bosses
    (3) The Business/Executive Team

    We call this 3×3 Relevance – without it learning leaders often struggle to get initiatives off the ground or fully implemented.

    If you want to accelerate leadership development, start by ensuring that the executive team buys into the relative value and impact compared to other strategic priorities. If the desired business and learning objectives are not in the top 5, don’t waste your time.  Ensure that you design a leadership development program that matters enough to get their full support and commitment.

    Does your executive team consider your leadership development program to be a top 5 business priority?

  2. Cultivate a Growth Mindset
    At the heart of accelerating leadership development lies the fundamental belief in the power of a growth mindset. That means that the organization and its leaders believe that leadership abilities and attitudes can be developed through dedication and hard work. This is important because our leadership simulation assessment data shows that effective leaders cultivate a workplace culture where challenges are viewed as opportunities for growth and learning.

    Leaders who adopt a growth mindset view challenges as opportunities for growth rather than insurmountable obstacles. They embrace setbacks as learning experiences and remain resilient in the face of adversity. This resilience enables leaders, and their teams, to better bounce back from failures, adapt to organizational change, and persevere in pursuit of shared goals.

    Does your organization cultivate an environment where employees feel empowered to learn, experiment, and push the boundaries of what’s possible?

  3. Embrace Leadership Action Learning
    One of the most potent approaches to accelerate leadership development is through action learning leadership development programs. Leadership action learning programs are typically multi-month engagements where a select cohort of cross-functional leaders work in teams to design and implement challenging strategic projects to move the business forward while receiving invaluable coaching, support, and perspective to build their leadership capabilities and confidence. This highly personalized and outcome-oriented approach to development helps leaders to identify their strengths, areas for improvement, and strategies for growth while getting “real work” done.

    Leadership action learning is a dynamic and versatile approach to leadership development that drives meaningful change and achieves sustainable results by providing exposure to different facets of the business, developing critical strategic thinking skills, enhancing decision-making abilities, and allowing for a deeper understanding of themselves and their organization.

    Are you designing leadership development programs using a structured framework for learning from real-world experiences?

  4. Create a Culture of Learning Accountability
    Organizations committed to accelerating leadership development foster a culture of accountability where skill adoption and impact is defined, tracked, and continuously improved. By providing regular feedback loops and the necessary transparency and performance pressure to adopt new leadership skills, companies can cultivate a culture of continuous improvement and empower leaders to reach their full potential.  That means being able to answer the following questions:

    — Are leaders using the new knowledge, skills, and processes?
    — Are their bosses involved, supportive, and reinforcing?
    — Are the new leadership skills making the desired impact?

    Are you consistently measuring and reinforcing the adoption and impact of your leadership programs?

The Bottom Line
Leaders matter.  Accelerating leadership development is essential for people-driven organizations. Through thoughtful and concerted efforts, organizations can cultivate a leadership pipeline of talent capable of taking you where you want to go.  How do your leadership development programs stack up?

To learn more about how to accelerate leadership development, download How to Fast Track Your Leaders with Just-in-Time Action Learning


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