Leaders need to develop leaders…directly.

Developing leaders is not a simple exercise. The need for leaders to constantly adapt requires an approach to leadership development that is equally flexible. There is more to developing the leadership potential of your direct reports than an occasional training and their annual performance conversation.

Effective leadership development is a delicate ecosystem of mindsets, habits, skills and environmental conditions that must come together to create the conditions that allow leaders to connect their people with their potential. Ultimately, developing leaders for tomorrow requires a move away from standard development practices and a move toward embracing direct development opportunities.

When a leader employs a direct development style, they invite their teams to step into the drivers seat of their own development. They take on a partnering approach and assist their teams to explore and engage in their own targeted development needs. They dig below the surface behaviour to work with the intention that’s driving that behaviour, and they take a long-term approach to performance improvement, which results in sustainable changes and on-going development over time.

Leaders who outsource the leadership development of their people to generic training programs and annual performance conversations and do not supplement these activities with direct development efforts on the job, create a rod for their own back. If their people are not developing fast enough, in the right way, with the right skills, they will leave or be left behind. That is the nature of the development landscape in leadership today. Are you ready for it?

Found this useful? This blog is an edited extract from my new book Developing Direct Reports: Taking the guesswork out of leading leaders out now.

Written for leaders who lead leaders, this book is a practical guide for addressing the 12 most common, globally recognised leadership derailers. It’s a resource for developing leadership, on the job.

Together with my co-authors Corrinne Armour and Belinda Cohen, I look forward to sharing more with you over the coming months.

As a professional People Whisperer, Anneli has been working with leaders and teams to improve their communication and interpersonal intelligence for almost a decade.

If you’d like to improve your interpersonal effectiveness and influence, or decode the behaviours’ of others, contact Anneli today.

www.anneliblundell.com                     @AnneliBlundell