Although 83% of companies say it’s important to develop leaders at all levels, only 18% of businesses say their leaders are effective at meeting business goals.
This shocking difference between the recognition of how vital leaders are – and developing excellent leaders in practice – is an issue facing large and small businesses.
Within the context of rapidly changing business environments, where leaders are expected to stay ahead of technology, manage multiple priorities and retain employees, the modern-day leadership challenge is possibly greater than ever before.
5 Ways to Build Great Leaders
1. Define what ‘great leadership’ means for your business
Different businesses have specific needs and operate in unique contexts, so the definition of a great leader varies in different situations. Take some time to evaluate what excellent leadership means for your organisation. Any plans for training and developing leaders should be centred on this.
2. Recognise personal qualities
Personality is important in good leaders as well as core leadership skills. Identify and encourage the personal qualities of the people you have in your business. This creates leaders that other employees can relate to and have rapport with.
3. Identify strengths and weaknesses
Each leader will have different strengths and weaknesses, meaning there is no catch-all leadership training programme. Use various tools to identify the areas leaders need to work on and develop training programmes accordingly. Don’t try to tackle too many problem areas in training either; focus on one or two skills for the best results.
4. Tackle leadership development from multiple angles
Leadership training should form just one part of a broader leadership strategy. Developing leaders should happen in multiple ways, from internal culture to networking and peer-to-peer learning.
5. Practice leadership
Leadership skills should be put into action in test environments. Simulating business situations allows leaders to learn and build skills through practical tasks that won’t have an impact on the actual business.
Read our full Guide to Effective Leadership e-book, including current trends and statistics on leadership issues, practical tips and case studies about how companies such as Harrods, Enterprise Rent-A-Car and The Chartered Management Institute are tackling leadership development.