Benefits of leadership development: Is it Worth it?
September 10, 2023
Talented and resilient leaders help businesses override numerous hurdles, contributing to their growth significantly. In our working with numerous business leaders, we have witnessed how capable leaders enabled several entities to grow and prosper despite facing several constraints. Identifying untapped talents from the workforce and providing them the expertise to hone their skills requires suitable planning and expertise. The crafting and deployment of a robust leadership development strategy will act as the catalyst for your venture’s growth. Before delving into the details, let us focus on the salient benefits of leadership development.
How do we define a leadership development program?
It is a carefully crafted strategy deployed by businesses to identify and train potential leaders from the workforce for unhindered growth and prosperity. We would recommend business owners to focus on developing such specialised strategies from the inception stage. We have witnessed some ventures flourishing for early planning and deployment of leadership development programs. Also experienced the stark opposite!
Understanding the core Benefits of leadership development
From a regional grocery business to the MNCs spanning continents, all ventures at some point understand the value of focused development. Sometimes, it is a reaction to unpleasant experiences, other times, it is in preparation of the future. Without such a strategy in place, how would your business identify and hire the right talent and prepare them for what is coming next?
Leadership effectiveness can determine the fate of your organisation. By fate I mean the ‘bottom line’ here. In an extensive study driven by Forbes across commercial banks, it was observed, ‘ poor leaders lost money; good leaders made profit; and extraordinary leaders more than doubled the company’s profits in comparison to the other 90%!’
The growth prospects of your venture depends largely on acquired talents possessing required leadership traits. Even before designing an executive program, it is essential organisations spend time identifying skills for leadership development.
Are there other Benefits of leadership development programs for businesses?
Identifying and grooming leaders early
After recruiting a handful of talented, experienced people in key roles, a sense of assuredness seeps in, right! That seems fine but what about the future? Your existing leaders will retire after a time and some of them will move to greener pastures, invariably!
That is precisely why your organisation needs a well-developed process to identify and develop leaders for future needs. The identification and development of future leaders, we feel, should begin right at the recruitment stage. A robust leadership development strategy includes the provision of screening and identifying talents during the recruitment phase. Focusing on profile and interaction analysis are pivotal here. We will suggest hiring an ace consultancy firm to design and deploy such early competency identification methodologies properly.
Mentoring and guiding Top Talents
Some organisations spend a lot of time hiring, identifying and initiating a leadership journey program or academy. Even with the right intent and great budget, such programs stagger, because the process misses out on establishing mentoring responsibilities. People often move out because there is no support system at place to let them know the next step or what to expect. A report by ExecuSearch showed, 66% of professionals said that there isn’t much support for those wishing to take on leadership roles. Mentoring can be a powerful addition to any well planned Leadership Development Program.
The Domino Effect
Did you think the benefits of leadership development programs are limited to any specific type of employees? Whether an extensive intervention or an Executive Coaching program, whatever leaders go through, it changes the way leaders approach any situation or people. We have witnessed leaders becoming empathetic towards teams, resulting in a performance boost. Risk appetite improves and so does confidence. My personal favourite is when such leaders come back and tell us, my family sees a change in me, I am so happy! Leadership development interventions are holistic. When done right a handful of people can change the trajectory of the organisation.
Positive Work Atmosphere
The benefits of leadership development include a positive work ambiance in the organisation. Offering existing leaders in a venture apt training for honing their skills, leads to a positive environment. Leaders can then manage teams better and focus on collaboration and productivity enhancement. They often influence their teams to create an environment that fosters growth.
Better Problem Resolution
One of our clients came to us with the problem statement that collaboration was a huge issue in certain pockets of the organisation. They wanted us to drive an intervention to resolve such challenges. We spent weeks investigative and getting deeper in the issue. One of the significant outcomes was the leaders would avoid sharing unpleasant feedback or confrontation of any kind. The journey from there was easy. Development interventions are at times just about uncovering the actual pain point and not the symptoms.
Better Decision Making
Experienced leaders come with a lot of wisdom when it comes to decision making. They have had their successes and failures. Their life experiences make their ability to make decisions very instinctive. When such leaders go through leadership development programs, they not only get stronger in risk analysis but also know how to educate their teams to be better decision makers. In the end, leaders are empowered when they are able to produce more leaders in the organisation.
The power of Retention
How can we not mention better employee retention amongst the top benefits of leadership development? A research report by ExecuSearch highlights 86% of professionals said that they would change jobs if they were offered more opportunities for professional development; Professionals ranked support from leadership/management as the most important element of company culture. A well-planned Leadership Development program enables businesses to achieve better talent retention rates. Such programs offer the teams immense professional development opportunities. As well as a high rate of engagement in the organisation.
Reduced Stress and Burnout
Leaders in any organisation get exposed to enormous levels of stress, leading to recurring burnout. One of the notable benefits of leadership development strategy is reduced stress on the leaders and gains across all hierarchies. Such a nuanced strategy equips the leaders to cope better with stressful events and developments, enabling them to perform better, consistently. Our consultancy now plans Leadership Development strategies for clients with a special focus on stress management.
You may want to read: Why the development of leadership should be a priority for businesses
How to develop an effective leadership development plan?
We believe every company has a distinct work culture and growth plan. Analyse these nuances well before crafting a leadership development strategy. We would suggest business owners to segregate the process of developing and deploying such a strategy into some logical steps:
- Analysis of the organisational work culture and growth roadmap, through surveys, interviews and brainstorming sessions
- Identification of the type of leaders for venture growth
- Identification of the required skills for leadership development
- Crafting the methodology for identifying new talents with leadership traits
- Crafting the methodology for fine-tuning the skills of existing leaders in the entity.
- Deploying the methodologies at the organisational level through methods like experiential workshops, specially developed training etc.
- Monitoring of the progress and efficacy of the strategy and making changes as and when required.
We would say that developing and deploying a leadership development strategy is not exactly a one-time thing. To obtain the full Benefits of leadership development policies, making periodic changes to the existing program becomes a necessity. Factors like organisational growth and expansion into newer segments, changing customer trends, technological innovations seeping into the business scene, changing employee expectations, etc. necessitate these changes.
Are Leadership Development Programs for You?
It is obvious to assume that large organisations carry out such Leadership interventions. A very pleasant surprise is, small and medium sized companies are far more conscious and budget their people development initiatives. We have seen a sharp increase in new entrepreneurs seeking Business Coaching services for their development. A lot of leaders take it on themselves to join Leadership Development workshops to ensure they do not stagnate.
Summing it up
The Benefits of leadership development programs are undeniable, as we all understand. The right partner can create magic for you. Focus on some key aspects when you search for such expert consultancies to craft leadership development programs. These include- understanding the problem statements they have worked with, the diversity and size of the client base, service terms, and transparency. You can also contact us if you are looking for Leadership Development Intervention or Executive Coaching
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