Leadership development: Cultivate the Cultivators

April 19, 2017 by Wally Bock

John F. Broer is assistant vice president, learning and development for Welltower Inc. Recently he wrote a piece for CLO Media titled, “But I Don’t Want to Be a Leader.” Early in the article, I read something that inspired a smile

“Talent development professionals can and should proactively identify people developers within their organizations.”

I smiled because I was one of those “people developers.” One of the compliments I treasure most came from a man who worked for me. When we ran into each other years after we worked together he said, “You know, your shadow still falls across this company.” He was referring to the people I had helped develop who had risen to leadership positions.

Leadership development and the people developers

Every company has them, people like me who find great joy in helping others develop. John Broer’s article got me thinking that we should have a way to identify those people and cultivate them.

Leadership development starts with paying attention

The first act of great leadership development programs is identifying men and women who have the aptitude for leadership. We can improve our success rate if we can identify the people who do that well. It might be easier than you think.

Leadership development and the cultivators

Years ago, I did some leadership development training in a large organization. One of the exercises involved having participants tell about how they developed into the leader they were. There were about thirty people in the class, but every one of them named one of three common bosses from early in their careers.

Find the people who whose shadow falls across your company and you’ll uncover a valuable resource for leadership development. You will have unidentified your company’s leadership cultivators and now you can cultivate them.

Wally Bock is a coach, a writer and President of Three Star Leadership.

Posted in Leadership Development

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