Finally! An Approach To Leadership Development That Works

Leadership DevelopmentIf you understand the nature of people, you can create a leadership development strategy that works

  • What are we talking about here?

If you look up “leadership development” in Wikipedia,, what you find as a definition is: leadership development expands the capacity of individuals to perform in leadership roles within organizations. Leadership roles are those that facilitate execution of a company’s strategy through building alignment, winning mindshare and growing the capabilities of others. Leadership roles may be formal, with the corresponding authority to make decisions and take responsibility, or they may be informal roles with little official authority.”

With that definition as a starting place, it should be evident that every organization would like to have an effective leadership development strategy. The ability to create alignment of everyone in the organization on a common objective and winning the mindshare of others is critical to achieving the organizations objectives.

  • The problem is that most strategies simply don’t work

According to McKinsey & Company, the well-known global management consulting firm, in an August 2017 article entitled What’s missing in leadership development, states: “unfortunately, there is overwhelming evidence that the plethora of services, books, articles, seminars, conferences and TED-like talks purporting to have the answers – a global industry estimated to be worth more than $50 billion – are delivering disappointing results. According to a recent Fortune survey, only 7 percent of CEOs believe their companies are building effective global leaders, and just 10 percent said that their leadership development initiatives have a clear business impact. Our latest research has a similar message: only 11 percent of more than 500 executives we polled around the globe strongly agreed with the statement that their leadership development interventions achieve and sustain the desired results.”

  • The problem is especially alarming now

This is particularly alarming as we attempt to successfully re-boot American businesses to be more globally competitive. In fact, a recent Deloitte study found that 56% of executives believe their companies are not ready to meet today’s leadership needs. Many companies are responding, last year spending $31 billion on leadership development programs, and since 2015 alone spending on such programs has increased by 10%.

But no all attempts to “make” leaders are created equal. Matt Norquist, CEO of Linkage, a global leadership development consultancy firm, says, “I think that, despite all the effort, a lot of the companies I see aren’t making sustainable progress.”

  • There is a reason for these depressing reports and statistics

Our work with people in organizations for 30+ years has developed an understanding of the problem with such clarity that we’ve been able to turn these statistics around profoundly and create an approach to leadership development that not only works but works consistently. The reason for this is our approach to who human beings are and their fundamental nature.

Traditional leadership development approaches fail because they view people as a “human doing,” a person with habits and strategies that can be molded to produce desired results. So-called experts are good at creating a list of desirable leadership characteristics which, if successfully taught to anyone desiring more effectiveness as a leader, will produce that result.

  • We are human beings, not human doings

But the reality is that people are not “human doings,” they are human “beings,” and the implementation of effective leadership characteristics must first account for the nature of the being that is to be taught. Here’s a simple, but accurate formula that explains the nature of us:

Our beliefs – > our thoughts -> our feelings -> our actions -> our results

In other words, it is fundamentally the body of beliefs that we have acquired over our life time that determine who we are as a human being. Those beliefs determine how we think and those thoughts determine our feelings. Our thoughts and feelings than dictate our actions and it is our actions that determine our results.

It should therefore be evident that the traditional leadership development approaches skip to the last two steps in the formula and completely ignore the first three. And that is the reason why they are all doomed to failure.

  • Here’s the bases of our approach to leadership development

Since who we are starts with an analysis of our beliefs, it certainly would make things easy if everyone had the same set of beliefs. Unfortunately, that is clearly not the case. In fact, it is safe to say that with the 7+ billion people on the planet, there are 7+ different belief systems. But before you throw up your hands in defeat, there really is good news. The fact of the matter is that those 7+ billion belief systems have some fundamental things in common.

As I explain in Chapter 3 of my ground-breaking book, Unshackled Leadership, human beings have two and only two internal conversations that they listen to. One is the voice of their higher consciousness and the other is the voice of their ego. Their higher consciousness voice is fundamentally a voice of hope, happiness, joy, excitement, win/win, you and me, and, above all else, love.

Their ego voice is fundamentally a voice of anger, sadness, frustration, win/lose, you vs. me and, above all else, fear. The ego voice also tells all people that they are not good enough, not worthy and neither loved nor lovable. The only difference from one human being to another is how loud the voice is and how much they listen. You can get a much deeper discussion of this reality in my before-mentioned book.

Napoleon Hill, author of Think and Grow Rich, in his later book, Outwitting the Devil, says the ego dominates the thinking of 98% of the people on the planet. And therein lies the problem. You really can’t be and likely never will be a great leader and your leadership development strategy will never work when this factor is not considered. How can you be effective as a leader in a win/lose world?

Our approach, on the other hand, wakes people up to the reality of their ego and we have developed a strategy to transition them to listening to the voice of their higher consciousness. This approach to leadership development not only works but works consistently.

If you’re ready to act and implement our approach to leadership development, give us a call @ 949-542-6830.