HOW TO: Tell If Your Company Needs Leadership Training

by Sharlyn Lauby on July 19, 2012

(Editor’s Note: Today’s post is sponsored by ITM Group. Yep, that’s my company. We focus on delivering workplace training in the areas of leadership, employee performance coaching, and group dynamics. I wanted to write a post specifically directed at the work we do and thought this would be a very upfront way of addressing it. Hope you enjoy the post!)

A survey from Chief Learning Officer magazine indicates that companies are maintaining or increasing their leadership training budgets this year. Why? Well, the reason is fairly obvious – businesses need good leadership. And we all know what good leadership does for our companies:  it helps us achieve our business goals, engage our employees and grow the company. This translates into bottom-line profits and increased shareholder value.

training, consulting, human resources, hr, leadership, leadership trainingSome companies might argue that leadership training doesn’t have to be pro-active. When a need arises, then you conduct training. Unfortunately, this can set your organization on a bit of a roller coaster where you have peaks and valleys of organizational effectiveness based upon the quality of the leadership team (or lack thereof).

If you’re wondering how your leadership is faring right now, here are a few indicators that will tell you if leadership training might be necessary:

1) Because Your Employees Say So – I don’t expect that employees come to your office and say “Get my manager some training asap!” – although they might. But they will come to your office and say things like:

“My manager is playing favorites.”

“My manager doesn’t know what’s happening in our department.”

“My manager promised me an answer last week and I haven’t heard a thing!”

“Everyone is getting away with murder and my manager isn’t doing a thing about it.”

Employee comments can be an indicator of a bigger issue. Listen to their concerns and ask yourself why they are happening.

2) Because Senior Leadership Says So – When executives can’t take a day off out of fear the office will fall apart, or when some C-Suite leader gets a call on the weekend because a manager can’t fix something…you can bet your reserved parking space a discussion about the quality of leadership will arise.

Also consider if you have senior executives who are planning their retirement, it’s perfectly normal and in the best interest of your business to have a conversation about where the next generation of leaders will come from and how to get them ready for those roles and responsibilities.

3) Because Your Customers Say So – I’ve known executives who were afraid to grow their company because the leadership team couldn’t handle it. I’ve known customers who would only deal with one person in a company because they didn’t trust anyone else.

Your company is in business to make money. This means your leadership team must be effective in order for your business to deliver products/services and keep customers happy. Is a fear of customer expectations or a lack of innovation restricting company profits? Yep, you can look for that to become a leadership conversation.

leadership, training, leadership training, employee training, employee engagement

Any of these signs are reason to think about your leadership team. Ask yourself the following question and answer it with brutal honesty, “If I didn’t work here, would I still be the evangelist for this brand? Would I still buy the product/service the company offers?”

ITM Group offers leadership programs that focus on being a capable leader, coaching employees for improved performance and effective decision making. I hope you’ll take a moment to check out our training programs here. Thanks for being a supporter of HR Bartender!

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