Leadership Development

Leadership Development – The Key to Success in a Volatile World

Leaders are an integral part of any organisation and leadership development is essential in today’s volatile world. Now more than ever, leaders need to navigate in a world full of vulnerability, uncertainty, complexity & ambiguity.

To function effectively in this volatile environment leaders must always be developing, because the business landscape is constantly evolving and responding to outside influences, such as a pandemic, or a Brexit, or a war.

Leaders are the ones who motivate and inspire their team to work towards a common goal. If leaders are not continually developing, adapting, and learning new skills; they risk being left behind and exposing their organisations to perils of a volatile, changing business landscape.

When the business landscape shifts quickly, pressure mounts on leaders to react and adapt, this is when their leadership development skills pay off. Staying calm under pressure, thinking clearly and rationally, setting clear goals, and communicating these goals to their teams and organisations are crucial in times of change.

The Leadership Development Process

Leadership is not something you are born with, but rather it is something that needs to be developed. In fact, in a volatile world, it needs to be continually developed.

The leadership development process is a continuous journey. It requires a strong commitment from the leader and the organisation. The process starts with self-awareness, followed by training, coaching, and mentoring.

Leadership development can be done in many different ways. For example, some people might try to read books on leadership, while others might take a course, attend a seminar or hire a professional leadership coach.

If leaders did all of the above, they would be prepared for almost anything this volatile world could throw at them today. However, by tomorrow, this volatile world could have changed again. Take the pandemic for example, before this happened, how many leaders were prepared for their entire workforce to be locked down in their homes and unable to work?

The Benefits of Good Leadership

Some organisations reacted almost immediately and had their teams working from home, whereas others took weeks to respond, eventually following the lead of others. Some organisations invested heavily in equipping and training their new work from home teams, so at least some of their workforce could continue working.

In these cases a decision was clearly made that the cost of the equipment, training and rolling out this new way of working, whilst high, was far less than the projected loss in revenue if they did nothing.

The ability to adapt almost immediately is a clear indicator of good leadership and good leadership development programme in place. They kept calm, thought it through rationally, assessed the risks, formulated a strategy, set goals and clearly communicated their plan of action throughout their organisations.

We should also consider the positive ripple effects that such prompt, decisive action had. Organisations who adapted and acted quickly, and who clearly communicated it to their teams and staff, put a lot of worried, stressed-out minds at rest. This not only shows good, strong leadership skills, but also displays the traits of conscious leadership too. Both of these a signature characteristics of good leadership development.

How many of you in the early days of the lockdown were faced with the uncertainty and stress of not knowing if your organisation would even exist in the coming weeks or months? or you would have a job, the next day, the next week or the next month?

The Cost of Poor Leadership

This is a topic we covered, in more depth, in a recent article, where we stated:

“Poor leadership skills can have a huge impact on your company. They can lead to high staff turnover, increased absenteeism, and decreased productivity. The cost of poor leadership is not just financial, but can affect the company’s culture and morale as well.”

Given the context of a volatile world, we can clearly add to this – the organisation could completely fail and close down as the result of a lack of leadership development that resulted in poor leadership.

It is crucial that organisations invest in developing the management and leadership skills of their employees to boost productivity and prepare them for anything a volatile world could throw at them. Leadership development will also have a healthy influence on the economic success of the nation. The quality of management and leadership are the biggest factors determining business performance and national productivity.

It’s estimated that around three quarters of all organisations have not adequately trained their employees who have been promoted into managerial positions as a result of staff turnover. This has resulted in over 2 million – what a government report refers to as – “accidental managers”, which have been identified as a core contributor behind the high cost of poor leadership.

How Can Leaders Be Developed?

Poor leadership can be costly, but can be avoided or at least reduced through developing and training. Leadership development usually begins with improving yourself first – by developing the right mindset and emotional intelligence in order to teach others.

Working with a professional, qualified, and experienced leadership coach can be beneficial because they will give advice and feedback throughout the leadership development process. Leadership coaches can provide valuable insights into your leadership style that you may not notice on your own. They will also be able to point out aspects of your personality that may need improvement, which can make you a stronger leader in the long run.

Leadership Development with Sarah Jones

Sarah has personally overcome many challenges you will face as you progress your career on the path to becoming a successful leader.

With over 25 years working in leadership positions within global organisations, Sarah is perfectly placed to help you in your leadership development journey, coach you and prepare you for the tough leadership decisions you will be forced to make in an ever changing and  volatile world. 

The first step on your development journey starts with a free, confidential, 30-minute consultation with Sarah, so don’t delay and book today.

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