Seizing The (Leadership) Moment

The phrase leadership moment can feel vague, looming over us and begging the question, “what even constitutes a leadership moment?”

The truth of the matter is that leadership moments happen all the time. Leadership moments are the instances in which you are required to step up and push forward. Leadership moments are the times when you use your emotion to connect to a workplace issue. Leadership moments are constant, and they’re happening to everyone with no regard to the typical corporate hierarchy.

Every day moments, every day challenges

The workplace has shifted, in part due to the forces of the digital age, and the once-standard organizational chart (you know, the one with the CEO on top, and then the Senior Directors, and managers, and so on?) has been flattened. This shift means that everyone from seasoned CEOs to first-time full-timers are experiencing leadership moments – and at least 5 a day at that.

How do we prepare so many different types of people for so many different types of moments? First, let’s examine the challenges.

1. The number of inexperienced managers entering the workforce is growing, and they are in need of development.

It isn’t news that more Millennials are stepping into leadership roles. However, what is different about today is the environment they’re coming into as leaders. Baby Boomers and Gen Xers are teaching Millennials leadership principles based on the old methods they learned as they were building their careers, but this is a new workforce. We need to continue to think differently about leadership development and how to adapt leadership principles to new age environments.

2. 90% of CEOs feel their organizations are vulnerable because of talent development deficiencies.

And that’s just them thinking of their current situation. Think of a few years down the road and how this statistic will grow if nothing changes. We’ve already covered how we need to think differently about leadership development to make progress, now is the time to put this into action. This means we may need to push ourselves to try different approaches to enable leadership success.

3. Our resources are very scarce in the learning and development industry compared to the amount of people we serve.

During a live poll among our Maximizing Leadership Moments webinar participants, 58% stated smaller discretionary budgets as the #1 resource constraint their organization is experiencing.  This was along with responses such as less leader availability, challenge of managing new modalities, and fewer L&D professionals. In fact, we heard an example from a participant that there was 1 of him compared to 1300 employees to serve!

Preparing the masses

Some leaders are visual learners, some interactive, some prefer mobile-based and some enjoy gamification to learn. With a variety of learning types and the shrinking time learners put to developing their skills, how do we help leaders on a large scale?

To prepare for the future, we have to prepare each and every member of the organization. The top-down approach of the Industrial Age will not carry us towards success in the way that it used to. The democratization of access to leadership resources is important now more than ever. People are facing these moments everyday, and they need the tools and skills to do so successfully – regardless of role or rank.

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