What Are You Doing to Close the Big Leadership Gap?

Susan S Freeman Blog

The 2014 Global Human Capital Trends survey published earlier this month by Deloitte University Press points out critical gaps in organizational leadership.

In a paper examining the findings, authors Canwell, Dongrie, Neveras and Stockton point out that:

Leadership GapLeadership “remains the No. 1 talent issue facing organizations around the world”, with 86% of respondents to the survey rating it “urgent” or “important”. However, the fact that only 13% say they do an excellent job of developing leaders at all levels means that this area has the largest “readiness gap” in the survey.”

Technology, rate of innovation, millennial-driven work force, and globalization require new styles of engagement.  With flatter organizations and stagnating economic growth, leaders are needed at all levels; not just at the top.

One of the biggest challenges organizations face is how to identify, train and retain that talent. 

Many have settled in on offering a “cafeteria” type of training; allowing employees to select from the menu of options, with the company footing the bill.  The problem with that approach is that adults don’t learn that way.  What is needed is information, reinforcement through practice, and a mechanism for ongoing feedback.  Insight and new behaviors can occur over time with repetition and support.

This means offering more than stand-up training programs. “Senior executives should create a culture that broadens the opportunity for leaders to develop in new ways,” writes the Deloitte team.

“This means putting potential leaders in positions that stretch them beyond their current skill sets, and continuously coaching and supporting leaders so they can build their capabilities as rapidly as possible.”

Although recognized, say the authors, it is “simply not widely adopted and practiced”.

Step Up Leaders are invested in improving, growing and developing themselves. 

Leadership gapThey know that this is the most effective and sustainable means of leading in their organizations.  They invest time and money in developing themselves.  They extend this to their valuable teams with an eye toward what is needed to change existing behavior.

That is rarely a quick fix workshop or 1-day seminar.  Instead it is a thoughtful, conscious approach to learning based upon the organizational vision, strategy and culture.  Learning needs to be designed and implemented over time; results need to be measured and monitored. Importantly, people need to be coached to breakthrough those blind spots that have become embedded in the way they think and communicate.

Take an inventory of what’s working and what’s not.  What are you doing to close those leadership gaps? 

Identify them.    Inventory internally.  Obtain external, objective perspectives.  Be willing to take ACTION with what you find.

Remember.  Nothing happens until you take action.  Thinking, ruminating, worrying, and procrastinating don’t enable breakthrough results.

My passion is coaching leaders who are high-achieving and motivated.  They have reached a crisis point and feel stuck.  What they have been doing is no longer effective and they don’t know what else to do.  I help learn to access the Natural Leader within, so they can re-discover passion, clarity and exceptional results.

Be part of the leadership solution in 2014.  It starts with you and a simple decision.  Visit Step Up Leader today.  Take one step to close the leadership gap.

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