The Leadership Paradox: 3 reasons why you should develop your people

By Michaela Picones  |  

3.8 min read

There are numerous studies, books, and articles on leadership. There is a shared theme of admiration for our effective leaders, a set of widely agreed-upon guidelines and principles, and a disparity between the have’s and have not. Why is it that those who might benefit the most from advancing their leadership skills receive the least development? This is what is referred to as the leadership development paradox.

With limited resources, it makes sense for organizations to recognize those who have a track record of success but as a result, this leaves certain individuals to be excluded from these opportunities. According to the 2021 HR Trends Report by McLean and Company, organizations that analyze skills gaps and train employees on new skills see greater benefits: higher performance in innovation, support with change, and data-driven decision making. With the limited supply of talent, it is now crucial more than ever to develop a strong chain of talent and a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. By continuously developing only high-performing individuals you are leaving the rest to a cumulative disadvantage “where the low- or mid-performing individuals are more likely to remain at or decline from, their current performance because they’re excluded from development programs that could improve their skills and capabilities, leading to fewer opportunities for career advancement (Shen, Kwok).”

Individuals come into organizations with unique combinations of skills and experience, all adding value to the ecosystem of the organization. The varying degrees of performance and productivity levels of an individual are not always solely under their direct control: poor on-boarding, inefficient processes, lack of organizational structure are just some examples of what could affect an individual’s performance. It is a waste to not maximize all of the talent that you have at your disposal.

3 reasons why you should invest in leadership training for your people

#1 You don’t have to be in a formal leadership role to be a leader

A leader is someone who can see how things can be improved and who rallies people to move towards a better vision. Sometimes this can mean being in a managerial role where you are responsible for other individuals, other times this can mean leading by example through exceptional performance. There are those who are behaviourally and naturally drawn to the role of being a leader. Depending on an organization’s mission, the type of leader you need will be different. An individual’s motivational behavioral drives and needs will affect what strategies they may choose to pursue but also their readiness to execute these strategies and the considerations they make.

#2 Motivated employees benefit most from development

There is a level of discomfort and uneasiness that goes hand in hand with leadership training. Those who are motivated to take on that challenge will be the ones who will most benefit. Programs for leadership development should be available ‘just-in-time’ to anyone with a desire to learn and grow. Exposure to some type of leadership training program, regardless of tenure, present role, or level of expertise, will only result in increased performance. Individuals seeking leadership positions should be encouraged and provided an opportunity to do so.

#3 You get what you give

Investing in your people will help you create a culture that is both productive and development-oriented. Establishing this culture will boost employee engagement and happiness. Employees that are happier produce better, higher-quality work. Your company’s reputation and productivity will improve as it generates higher-quality work. As a result, top talent will be attracted, and turnover will be reduced.

How Predictive Success combines leadership development with people data

Being an effective leader is a combination of self-awareness, mastering relationship development, and building more positive team dynamics. PSC Academy offers workshops that provide insights and tools to help decode employee drives, understand their motivating needs, and consider how these play out in virtual/in-person teams.

About Predictive Success

Predictive Success is an Elite Partner of The Predictive Index® has been consistently ranked in the top 10 of global partners since opening its doors in 2006. Through the Predictive Success team of experienced, professional consulting staff, we give Canadian companies the ‘edge’ to connect people to profit. We work with management teams to bring our knowledge, experience, and over a decade of partnership with The Predictive Index to work. We enable leaders with the power and the knowledge, to better motivate, lead and utilize people to the best of their ability. We have staff and local coverage in all provinces across Canada.

References:

https://hbr.org/2022/01/leadership-training-shouldnt-just-be-for-top-performers

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