By Taavo Godtfredsen
According to a recent report from Brandon Hall, 75% of respondents said their leadership development programs are ineffective. That’s an alarming—and frankly, unacceptable—number, especially given the amount of time, money and other resources organizations invest in leadership development initiatives. 75% is a significant enough number to indicate that something is systemically wrong with the approach many organizations are taking to in order to achieve development at the most critical levels of their business.
So why are so many organizations struggling to get the results they not only desire, but really need? It’s the subject of Skillsoft’s latest white paper, Direct the White Space: Refocusing Leadership Development from Program to Process, and one we will delve into in more deeply during our Jan. 21 webinar. The issue is two-fold: at the higher level, it comes down to (you guess it) development programs vs. development processes; on an individual level, it’s a matter of time management.
As you may have guessed, both of these issues are deeply intertwined, and it’s a relationship we’ll break down in the webinar. First, it’s important to understand the difference between a “program” and a “process.” As I say in the white paper, programs are much more episodic.
For example, think leadership seminars. An organization may send a select few individuals to hear a prominent expert speak for a few hours, but the results are generally short-lived. While these are great tools to incorporate in your development strategy, they don’t actively reinforce the principles they discuss on a daily basis. They are merely one-off lessons, so to speak and that’s where they fall short. To be effective, learning needs to be constant. It has to engage the learner on a daily basis. This creates routine and, ultimately, a shift in development culture. It becomes part of an immersive process.
As we’ll discuss in the webinar, the shift toward process begins at the individual level. Between their daily tasks, leaders have a finite amount of time at their disposal, or what I refer to in the white paper as “white space,” and it’s in this space the shift toward “process” has to happen.
I’m looking forward to getting into the details during the webinar and diving into specific strategies organizations can use to redirect how leaders use white space to affect process. With this approach, I believe (and the research will back me up) that we can chip away at that glaring number from Brandon Hall and make sure you’re getting maximum return on your development investment. So get registered, and we’ll see you there!
Taavo Godtfredsen is Vice President and Executive Producer, Leadership Content Development at Skillsoft.