The fact is that EVERY company needs to develop their leaders. And EVERY company has the resources to do so… it’s a matter of priority and commitment.
Leadership Development Pays
A 2015 joint study by the Conference Board® and Development Dimensions International® found that virtually every business need or challenge can be improved by good leadership. Some results from the study:
- 114% Higher Sales
- 36% Increased Productivity
- 77% Lower Turnover
The most successful companies invest in developing their leaders. Leaders develop the strategic direction of the company. They ensure that the proper tactics are carried out to be successful. Leaders are tasked with identifying and addressing business needs. Each leader is affecting numerous people from talent development to internal and external stakeholders. These all affect the bottom-line and all are worthy of leadership focus.
No Time or Money for Leadership Development
Often, misperceptions of what it takes to develop leaders lead to a reluctance to invest in Leadership Development.
First, is the anticipated cost of leadership programs. There is the perception that it is difficult or not possible to document a return on investment with these programs. Typically, when we invest in something, we want to see immediate returns.
Fact: Strong leadership directly impacts, sales productivity, turnover and more. Leadership Development is not a cost… it’s an investment. The ROI is there!
Secondly, there is the time factor. Today, schedules are filled with meetings and “free time” is taken up by responding to email. It’s commonplace to bring work home to fulfill one’s job responsibilities after hours. Finding time for development is often not even part of the conversation.
Fact: We find time for anything that is truly a priority. Is improving performance a priority for your business?
Thirdly, there can be a challenge with resources. HR departments are stretched thin and often their focus is needed on administrative work. Most HR professionals want to be business partners with their stakeholders, but they don’t have the personnel to allow for that. The result is that often it is “development from necessity” that is precipitated by a situation that could have been handled differently had the leader been trained to address it.
Fact: Current leaders have strengths that they can share with their peers and future leaders through mentoring and coaching. Companies can develop their people within their day-to-day activities.
Can We Afford Not to Train Our Leaders?
There are leadership development opportunities every day in business. These can and do have an impact on the bottom-line. From recruiting and onboarding the right people, to training and directing them to making strategic decisions to move the company in the right direction, leaders strongly influence the success or failure of a company.
So, it’s not a matter of “Can we afford leadership training?”. The question should be, “Can we afford NOT to train our leaders?”.
In future postings, look for ways to bring Fortune 50 leadership development to your company regardless of its size or HR capacity.