Leadership involves picturing how tomorrow can be better than today, creating a plan to make this vision a reality, and inspiring others to buy in and then stay the course especially when the going gets tough. This requires attracting talented people and convincing them to join an organization; forming a strong team from this group of individuals; and continuously developing, influencing, and guiding team members to coordinate their individual efforts in ways that allow the organization to accomplish its mission and outperform its competition. This is possible only through the collective efforts of individuals who push themselves to learn and grow, always refining their capacity to improve their performance.
Leaders must master a range of behaviors that paradoxically seem to be in opposition, assisting teams in simultaneously considering the long term while also taking care to execute necessary course corrections in order to deliver superior results in the short run.
A Note of Caution…
Despite spending billions of dollars annually, many organizations do not realize a return on their investment in leadership training. Recent conference presentations, articles and books describe how the leadership-development industry is failing to deliver on its promise of improved organizational performance.
Our view is clear: Investments in leadership development will only lead to increased firm performance in the context of organizations that provide the fertile ground required for learning to take place. Frequently this means that organization-wide and team-development interventions must precede individual leader development or training. And the development methods employed must be evidence-based. Contact us to learn more about our approach to leadership development, how it is different and why it is effective.
In order to achieve superior and sustained results, organizations require:
- Leaders who paint a compelling vision of the future, helping people to clearly see why the team’s activities are important and how they relate both to collective success and to the well-being of individual members.
- Leaders who are trusted by followers not to abuse their authority and who exercise good judgment, making sound and timely decisions, particularly in the midst of crisis and ambiguity. They are credible and competent, providing expertise upon which the team can draw in achieving its goals.
- Leaders who are self-aware, monitoring and managing themselves so that they read and respond appropriately to a wide range of people and situations. They reflect on their experiences, learning the important lessons contained in them and continuously growing as a result.
- Leaders who are equal to the challenges created by the relentless pace of technological change, the rapidly increasing complexity of macro- and micro-environments, and the interconnectedness of a global world.
- Leaders who are agile, balancing the competing demands of being strategic and operational (what has to be done) with the paradoxical need to be forceful or empowering as appropriate (how it is done).
- Leaders who build strong teams that work together effectively across interpersonal, organizational, functional, and global boundaries.