We develop Vertical programmes that actually develop your leaders!
Three “primary” conditions support Constructed Leadership Development and under each are tools and approaches that practitioners can use to create those conditions.
Warren Buffett tells the story about the first time he and Bill Gates met. They were at a party when Bill Gates, Sr. (father of the younger Gates) asked members of their table, “What was the one thing that most helped you to succeed?” According to Buffett, both he and Gates gave the same answer: “I know how to focus.”
Most leadership development programs aren’t focused. They are a grab bag of different tools, techniques, and methodologies thrown together, which don’t really coalesce around any guiding principles. But if we really want to help leaders develop, we must begin with one simple fact: vertical development is hard. And when things are hard, we can’t afford to waste time and energy doing things that don’t work. Instead, we must know the conditions that really lead to development and focus everything on them. This is when Constructed Development Theory works at its best!
Support Development, Don’t Force It
There is an important difference between helping a leader grow and trying to force it. Susanne Cook-Greuter points out that each stage of development is important and worthy. Horizontal growth within a stage is just as important as vertical growth beyond a stage. Our job is not to force development on someone. Our job is to create the right conditions in which someone can grow. Challenge and support, but don’t force it!
Finally, vertical development should not follow a prescriptive approach since specific tools and methods that work in one organisation (an advertising company) may be rejected at the next (a law firm). Instead, our focus should be on helping your leaders experience the three conditions in roughly equal balance. In addition, none of the tools are ‘vertical tools’ in isolation. They are merely the ingredients we combine to create the vertical conditions for development to occur.
When combined with the very latest research on Constructed Development Theory, you and we are on to a winning combination for Leadership Development!