Leadership Development is a Leadership Function

November 28, 2018 by Wally Bock

Leadership development programs are not all there is to good leadership development.

When most people think of leadership development at all, they think of a formal program. The program offers training, evaluates aspiring leaders, and helps with development plans. But you can have all those things and not have good leadership development.

Leadership Development Is Not Just A Program

The program part is important, but if you want to do a good job of developing leaders you must do more. Aspiring leaders need to take some of the initiative. And leaders throughout your organization need to develop less experienced leaders. If they aren’t developing aspiring leaders every day, you’ve got lots of room for improvement.

Leadership Development is a Leadership Function.

If you’re a leader, you set the example for less experienced leaders. That helps them create mental models of what good leadership looks like.

If you’re a leader, you must talk the talk, too. Tell team members about values and why your organization does things in a certain way.

That’s not all there is to leadership and developing leaders, though. I learned my basic leadership trade in the Marine Corps. The Marines expect their leaders to do two things. They must accomplish the mission. They must care for the people.

Developing leaders is part of caring for the people. It’s part of helping your teammates succeed.

In my experience, great leaders excel at developing leaders. They seize the opportunities in the cracks in the system to have conversations. In those conversations, leaders coach, counsel, encourage, and correct.

Leadership Development Should Be an Everyday Thing

Leaders in your organization should develop other leaders every day. It should be a normal part of the work. They should lead by example, explain what good leadership is, and coach less experienced leaders.

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

Posted in Leadership Development

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