If you’re like many people reading this, you’re curious about the future of leadership development training programs.
You might be asking yourself if leadership development programs improve morale (spoiler alert: it does). Or, you might be wondering what other organizations are doing on the leadership development front.
If you’re one of those people, I have some good news.
I’ve just completed a new research study on leadership development training with Dr. Reshma Shah.
The survey was conducted in partnership with Emory Executive Education at the Goizueta Business School at Emory University.
If you’d like to download the full report, click the image below:
Here are some of the key findings you’ll find inside the report.
It’s getting harder to attract new employees: 79% of survey respondents said it is harder to attract new employees today than it was 5 years ago.
It’s also harder to retain existing employees: 77% of survey respondents said it is harder to retain existing employees today than it was 5 years ago.
The need for training and development is growing: 80% of survey respondents said that the need for training and development is greater today than it was 5 years ago. This is driven, in part, by the growing need to attract and retain employees.
Most organizations provide regular leadership development training: 21% of those surveyed “always” have ongoing training and development programs. 48% have them “somewhat regularly” while the rest have them “occasionally” or “never.”
Training and development budgets are increasing: 54% of those surveyed said they were likely or very likely to see an increase in their budgets in the coming year.
And here are some of the key action steps from the research.
In the end, the only real differentiator is your people. Experts say that all products and services move towards commoditization. How can you combat that? By having better people — who have been trained how to lead, how to manage, and how to inspire their peers.
Action Step: Provide research summaries to the C-Suite that deepens their understanding of how a well-trained workforce can differentiate the organization from its competitors.
Leadership development programs improve morale and engagement. Studies show that pay raises and bonuses make employees happy for about 3 months before they gravitate back to their base line. What the most ambitious employees are interested in is growth. The best leadership development programs provide a way for employees to nurture their desire for growth.
Action Step: Existing employees may not fully understand all of the programs that are offered to them. Re-visit your internal communications program to ensure employees connect the dots between what you offer and their own personal growth.
What it takes to be a good leader is evolving. The last several years have been challenging. Today, leaders must look at their organization’s strategy, processes, and practices through a DE&I lens. They’re also being called upon to coach and mentor more frequently. As a result, leaders need to evolve. This can happen organically, or via leadership development programs.
Action Step: Investigate all of the leadership development options available to your employees, both internally and externally. Don’t be afraid to introduce new and emerging topics to ensure you’re providing forward-looking content.
Your organization is evolving. Your leadership development program should, too. As your business strategy evolves and your employees’ expectations evolve, you’ll need to evolve with them. Sticking with approaches that have worked in the past is not a good indicator of what will work in the future.
Action Step: Your role is to help others learn how to be better managers and leaders. Remember to put the same emphasis on your own learning journey — leadership development techniques continue to evolve and it’s a good practice to evolve with them.
Top leadership development programs help attract top talent. More than 79% of our survey respondents said it is harder to attract new employees today than it was 5 years ago. Salary increases and bonus checks only go so far, especially for talent that is interested in growth. With that in mind, providing the best leadership development programs will attract the best talent.
Action Step: Continue to work closely with your recruiters and your marketing department to ensure new and prospective employees fully understand the value of the leadership development programs you provide.
Employee retention improves when leadership development programs are provided. When an employee leaves your organization, the cost of training their replacement is a drain on your resources. A better approach is to invest in making your current leadership development program even better — that reduces attrition and preserves budget for more important things.
Action Step: Re-visit your internal communications program to ensure it clearly communicates the value of your programs to existing employees.
Leadership can be learned. There are few people who are born leaders. Most great leaders are actually created from individuals who have drive, ambition, and great programs based on the science of effective leadership.
Action Step: Learning how to be an effective leader is an ongoing process. By consistently providing new and innovative programs, you can develop your employees skills and ensure that they, and your organization, have a bright and vibrant future.
Interested in learning more?
I travel the globe doing leadership development programs at corporations and events. Some of these are based on my Unspoken Rules of Leadership platform. Others are based on my Intentional Communications workshop.
About the Author: Jamie Turner is an internationally recognized author, professor, consultant, and speaker who has helped employees at The Coca-Cola Company, Holiday Inn, Microsoft, Verizon and others do a better job leading, managing, and mentoring others. You may have seen Jamie in Inc., Entrepreneur, Business Insider, or Forbes. He’s also a regular guest on CNN and HLN, where he delivers segments on marketing, persuasion, and leadership. Jamie is the co-author of several essential business books. You can follow him on TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube.