Leadership development: The Magic is in the Mix

December 7, 2016 by Wally Bock

On November 15, 2016, Rick Lepsinger published a post on the OnPoint Consulting blog with the title, “When Virtual Leadership Training Is Better Than In-Person Training.” Here’s the opening.

“Is virtual leadership training better than the real thing? A recent article by Wall Street Journal writer Catherine Bolgar posed the question and invited me to weigh in. It’s clear more organizations are using virtual training for a variety of reasons. It’s more efficient, cost-effective and scalable, which is especially important for large and geographically dispersed companies. But is it really more effective? I’d argue there are many situations when it is.”

The key phrase in that quote is “many situations.” Reporters like to ask you big global questions that almost never have simple answers. Lepsinger saw that and reframed the question from “Is virtual leadership training better?” to “When is leadership training better?” That distinction is important for leadership development.

Leadership development is more than training

Virtual training is only part of the training puzzle. And training is only one piece of the leadership development puzzle. There are also developmental assignments and coaching and mentoring.

Leadership development is situational

The phrase, “it depends” is a good answer to almost any question about what’s best. Lepsinger points out, for example, that virtual training doesn’t require travel so it may a better choice than classroom training when funds are tight. Virtual training might be great for someone who’s tech-savvy, but not for a leader who’s techno-phobic.

Leadership development magic is in the mix

No one piece of the puzzle gives you the whole answer. The magic is in the mix. Your challenge is to give developing leaders an array of workable options and guidance to help them pick the right option for a specific challenge.

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

Posted in Leadership Development

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