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Development of Leadership 2021 & Beyond

Development of Leadership 2021 & Beyond

With the ushering of 2021, an agile leadership development program will enable leaders to stay on track to achieve their business objectives.

What characterizes an agile approach to leadership improvement? We are here to bring forth a few leadership development trends and outline the fundamental elements to include in the leadership approach in 2021.

Leverage technology to obtain and distribute content. In-person training is still risky owing to COVID-19 or other possible disrupters in 2021, while technology has been king. However, utilizing technology for technology’s sake is not the right way. Think about the ecosystem of a leadership development program. Technology may be the in the way of delivery, but content, application, and support are critical elements for seeing true results. Mindlessly clicking in self-paced training doesn’t move the needle. Efficient development programs lead to sustainable behavioral changes and do so by connecting content with coaching and accountability. Fortuitously, technology platforms can deliver remote-live coaching and involve their managers to ensure they are on track, applying the learned content.

Leaders must specify their learning objectives, then intentionally put into place a program. Solely moving content previously delivered in-person to Zoom or licensing a large online library of videos and classes are not effective substitutes for possessing an intentional approach to leadership development. For the content to be useful, it needs to be relevant to the desired outcomes and integrated into its conduct. Choose a content that supports your competency model, moves, builds upon itself to help a person reach their potential, and encourages them to perform their actual job with improved outcomes. If it is a completely self-paced consumption of online content or facilitation and PowerPoint on a Zoom call, don’t be shocked to see poor outcomes or a low ROI.

Leaders need to broaden their scope. The beauty of leveraging technology as the platform to present leadership development is scalable (leaders can include more of your leaders while geographic distribution is no longer a logistical problem). Those still in the beginning phase of their leadership role will greatly benefit. A recent Forbes article states, “With the average age of the first-time manager being 30, we have entered the age of millennial management; nearly 30% of Millennials hold managerial-level roles.” The change to a technology-based leadership development program gives leaders the knowledge to train their Millennial leaders in their preferred method.

Are you investing or spending? A leader’s budget should reflect the notion that the leaders themselves are the priority. Budget lines used to send cohorts to off-site training or fly in outside facilitators are finite. Leaders can also spend a large amount of money building a program entirely in-house. From instructional design to tech teams creating and maintaining the platform, these resources can swiftly consume your budget and leave less room for the leadership development program’s real audience. Hopefully, at this point, you are planning of how your leadership development program can be prepared for whatever 2021 brings.

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