Leadership Development: 12 Ways to Develop Remarkable Leaders

Length: 60 minutes
Category: Leadership Skills, Recorded Webinars, Topics
ID: WR-1036


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We are all born with a unique set of talents. While these abilities certainly help leadership development to evolve, truly remarkable leaders can only become remarkable through a continuous and upward climb of learning. In other words, remarkable leaders are made. And that means leadership skills can be developed with the right approach.The question is, does your organization have a clear-cut plan for leadership development? If the answer is ‘no’, then this webinar is for you.

Join bestselling author and leadership expert Kevin Eikenberry for an informative one-hour session that will show you proven and practical ways to create remarkable leaders – and maybe even become one yourself. This webinar is based on Kevin Eikenberry’s workshop Remarkable Leadership. His acclaimed book, “Remarkable Leadership: Unleashing Your Leadership Potential One Skill at a Time,” sets out to challenge participants to be more intentional about what, when, and how they learn. Remarkable Leadership: A Learning Series offers a flexible and practical learning experiences for leaders at all levels.

Attendees will learn:

  • Four reasons why many leadership development processes fail.
  • Twelve keys to a successful organizational leadership development process.
  • Strategies for developing targeted leadership skills in a relatively small period of time.
  • How to create relevant learning experiences to build leadership skills.

Who should attend:

  • A training or HR professional who delivers training.
  • An independent training consultant.
  • A manager who delivers or purchases training as part of their role.

Sarah: Hi everyone, and welcome to today’s webinar, Leadership Development, 12
Ways to Develop Remarkable Leaders hosted by HRDQ-U and presented by
Kevin Eikenberry. My name is Sarah and I will moderate today’s webinar. The
webinar will last about an hour so if you have any questions, go ahead and type
them into your go-to webinar control panel. There’s a questions area. If you click
on that little arrow, open it up, you can type in there, hit submit, that will come
right to us. We’ll either answer those as we can throughout the session, at the
end of the session or afterwards by email.
Sarah: Today’s webinar content is from the workshop, Remarkable Leadership. So if
you are interested in delivering this training within your organization, please
reach out to HRDQ. Now, you can see without further ado here, our presenter is
Kevin Eikenberry. Kevin is the Chief Potential Officer of the Eikenberry Group, a
learning and consulting company that provides a wide range of services
including training delivery and design, facilitation, leadership coaching,
organizational consulting and speaking services. His expertise includes
leadership teams and facilitation.
Sarah: Kevin has worked with many major organizations such as Cirque du Soleil,
Chevron, John Deere and Southwest Airlines. In addition, he is the author of
many books, including, Remarkable Leadership: Unleashing Your Leadership
Potential One Skill at a Time, From Bud to Boss: Secrets to a Successful
Transition to Remarkable Leadership and Vantage Points on Learning and Life.
And he was recently named by ink.com as one of the top 100 management and
leadership thinkers in the world.
Sarah: Welcome Kevin, and thank you for joining us today.
Kevin: Hey, it’s a pleasure. I’m glad to be with you all and I’m excited to get started. So I
think that’s my cue, Sarah? So we’re going to get started. I’m glad that you all
are here. I can get my slides. There were go. I’m glad that you’re all here. I’m
excited that you’re here and while I don’t know exactly who everybody is, I am
pretty sure that you are in some kind of HR role, you’re in some sort of
organization development role, you’re in training or learning, you’re in line
Kevin: Your job title could be manager, or senior manager, or team leader, or director
or VP. You could be at the C-level. You might be someone else. You might be a
trainer, you might be an individual contributor, you might be an individual
leader. Regardless of your job title, I am glad you’re here and I’m … Here’s what
I’m pretty sure that I know about you, that you’re here because, excuse me,
because you care about the success of your organization and you know that in
order for us to be successful as an organization, we have to develop our leaders
because our leaders are a contributor to that success.
Kevin: We can’t have a level of success that we want without leaders that help us get
there. So at some level, you have some need to improve in that area, right?
You’re saying, “12 ways to improve leaders, that would’ve been a good thing for
me.” I want to figure out how we can make it better for our leaders. So I’m going
to tell you a little bit about what we’re going to do. I’m going to give you a
roadmap of our time together.
Kevin: What you’re going to discover is what the reasons are as to why you’re in this
situation. And some of them, you might recognize and some of them might …
you might not have thought of but are probably true. We’re going to give you a
model to help you understand the situation and how … and a framework from
which to work. We’re going to give you the specific actions to take as the title of
the webinar says, 12 things, probably going to give you actually more than 12,
but we’re going to give you specific actions to take and we’re going to help you
decide what you need to do first.
Kevin: And not everyone is in the same place and that’s okay. And if you’re here and
you have a pretty developed-out program, great. If you’re here and you don’t
have anything, also great. Either way, this is going to be useful and helpful to
you. So what I also know is that you’re here because you want some things to
happen. You want to reduce the frustration that is around all of this, right? If
you know that your leaders need to be better, you probably have some
frustration in the organization about the situation.
Kevin: You want to literally and specifically improve the leader skills in your
organization. You want to build greater productivity in the organization. In fact,
that could be one of the underlying reasons why you want to do this. We need
to get more productivity, we need to have higher levels of innovation. Whatever
it is that’s driving your business, you know that leaders can help move us in that
direction and so you’re trying to gain those things and you’re wanting to solve
this problem and it is a problem, right, because your leaders aren’t delivering.
Kevin: If you’re not able to develop or developing the leaders, building the leadership
pipeline that you want, it’s a problem and you’d like to have some solutions and
that’s why we’re here, okay? So although Sarah did introduce me briefly a
moment ago, you might be wondering, well, why is Kevin qualified to have this
conversation with us? So I thought I’d say just a little bit more about me.
Kevin: And from the introduction, you know that I have been doing this for a long time
and I have been coaching leaders and training leaders and being a consultant to
organizations and I’ve been writing about leadership for a long time. I have seen
the problems firsthand. I want to be part of the solution, that’s what the
business that I’m in is all about, it’s helping more leaders make a bigger and
better difference in the world.
Kevin: And we’ve been helping organizations overcome these problems. We’ve been
helping organizations develop leaders for 25 years. And what’s not on the slide
that’s also true is that I’m a leader myself. So I think one of the things that I bring
to the table that you might not always get with folks that do what we do is that
you get an extremely practical approach because I’m trying to build leaders in
my organization as well and because I’ve been trying to develop myself for 30
years, I’ve learned some things from that exercise as well.
Kevin: I do bring for you for the perspective of today, I bring you an external
perspective that gets you outside of your current thinking that’s why you want
to come to webinars like this and why I’m sure it’s not your first HRDQ webinar
and I hope it’s not your last. We’ve been studying this problem for a long time
and we’ve been helping organizations and individual leaders get great results. So
that’s why I’m here, that’s why HRDQ has asked me to come. So with all of that
as preamble, it’s time to get started.
Kevin: So let’s actually get started. I said the first thing we’re going to do is we’re going
to talk about the situation that you find yourself in. So why is this such an issue
now? People have been thinking about it and talking about leadership
development for a long time but more is written about it all of the time and
there are some drivers and some reasons why. There are some reasons why
you’re probably feeling the frustration probably at some level where you’re
Kevin: Number one is organizations continue to get flatter. Well, what that means for
leaders is that when they get to a leadership role, they have a larger span of
control most likely, more direct reports than they might have … When I was
younger and had my first leadership role, I had a couple of direct reports. And a
lot of people, they moved into a small team but oftentimes now, it’s longer
before we become leaders and when we become leaders, we got a broader span
of control in this flatter organization. So every jump is a bigger jump and the first
one can be exceptionally challenging.
Kevin: And in many industries, we’ve got a tremendous amount of experience drain
going on. We got a lot of people that stayed around in the workplace longer
than they had originally planned. After their 401(k) became a 201k, they said,
“I’m going to work a little longer than I did before.” So we’ve got a lot of
organizations dealing right now with a big need for leadership development
because they’ve got a lot of leaders leaving.
Kevin: And they may be leaving because they’re retiring but they may be leaving
because they think the grass is greener. Full employment is a huge reality that
we deal with now and from a leadership perspective, it’s twofold piece. One is
some folks are probably trying to poach your leaders in one of the ways to get
them to stay, or to have … encourage them to stay as to give them a clear
picture of how you’re going to help them develop their skills.
Kevin: But the other side of the full employment problem if you will is that you have
folks on teams, individual contributors who are looking around and the number
one reason people voluntarily leave a job is they fire their boss. So if you’ve got
a lot of turnover right now, one of the reasons could very well be that you’ve got
some leaders that aren’t really where you need them to be, source of some of
your frustration perhaps.
Kevin: We’ve got an ongoing change in the expectations of work, the expectations of
leaders, where people are working as more and more people are working
remotely, technology continues to change and change is just happening faster
overall. And since leaders are in the change business, we have to keep our
leaders ready and able and to adapt, be flexible and be successful. And the other
reason why we have to deal with this today is we’ve never really cracked this
Kevin: We’ve been trying to figure out how to develop leaders for a long time and yet,
you’re not the only one on this webinar. There are other people with the same
challenges and the same questions that you have. There’s a lot of things we’ve
learned, very few people have really got the whole picture figured out. We’re
going to give you some ideas today that will help you move to that direction. So
this is why this is … maybe seems more pressing to you or why you’re hearing
more from those leaders above you as to why this is so critical from the business
perspective today.
Kevin: So why does all of this matter? Well, this matters because you can’t grow and
thrive in your organization without leaders. And if you don’t have successful
leaders that are growing, you can’t grow the business. You can’t grow and
thrive. And really, nothing is going to happen. No change is going to occur if we
don’t have successful leaders. And since I’m guessing you don’t want the status
quo, that you don’t want to keep things the way they are, that means you need
leaders who are more effective so that they can drive the organization in the
direction you’re trying to go.
Kevin: And the reality is that leadership is leverage, that an investment in developing
leaders is a lever across a great number of people because all of the leaders are
impacting and influencing a lot of other folks. So all of … We know why we’ve
got a problem, we know why it matters, so now, I want to know, and so this is
your first chance for you to type, get your fingers out and type in that question
pane, what are your challenges?
Kevin: I’ve laid out what I see going on in the world and what our clients are telling us,
but I’m curious what your challenges are because I want to know that as I walk
through the rest of this with you. So if you’ll take just a second to do that, that
would be really great. What are your challenges? Why are you here? What are
you hoping to get? Okay, anybody? Just put them in.
Kevin: Now, I see them popping up but … Sarah, would you just … so I don’t have to put
on my glasses, I’m just vain enough. So can you just share some of those for us?
Sarah: Sure. Absolutely. How to deal with a micro manager. Getting leaders on board
with change. Staff turnover is coming up a couple of times here. This is an
interesting one, deciding on the leadership competencies against the
organization needs.
Kevin: Yeah, we’re going to talk a little bit about that before we’re done. Yeah. What
Sarah: A company with many leaders that are new people managers. They’ve grown
within the organization.
Kevin: Okay.
Sarah: Buying into the vision. This is interesting, developing a culture of trust. And a lot
on change with leaders, getting leaders to adopt innovative solutions, getting
leaders on board with changes, leaders coming in from a new role, that kind of
internal growth.
Kevin: Yeah. Perfect. Well, we probably are more because there’s a lot of folks here
and I see stuff still scrolling in. We’re going to move on.
Sarah: Yes.
Kevin: If you see something else, Sarah, that comes in when we get later on, if you
want to share a couple more, that would be great. But that gives me some
context and it gives me some things to make sure that we connect with you all
on. That item about staff turnover, I just want to go back to what I said a couple
of minutes ago, and that is if you have … if you’re having a lot of turnover,
you’ve got to look at leadership as being one of the challenges.
Kevin: People are very often … They may say they’re leaving for a little more money,
and that may be part of it, but the survey after survey says that the number one
reason people voluntarily leave a job is that they fire their boss. So if that’s a
challenge that you’re facing, then you’re in the right place for us to talk about
this and think about this together for a little bit, okay?
Kevin: So it is definitely broken. Leadership development in most organizations is
broken at some level for all of the reasons we’ve just identified, for some of the
issues and some of the challenges that you’ve just described and as Sarah has
just shared with me. But here’s the way I like to think about this, that really what
we have is the insanity problem.
Kevin: Now, you all know what the insanity definition is, right? Doing the same thing
and expecting a new result. And fundamentally, that’s what organizations are
doing. They go back to the well and do some more leadership development
mostly like they did the last time and they expected to somehow be magically
better the next time than it was the last time. And because the problem is
getting bigger, we just really are just increasing the rate of the insanity.
Kevin: Now when you put it that way, it should make us all feel just a little bit sheepish.
I don’t say it to be mean, I say it because that’s what’s really happening in lots of
places. We got to do something. So we end up doing things that sound a little bit
like this, do you recognize any of these things? Do you recognize people saying,
“Well, that’s just the flavor of the month”? I was talking with a client just the
other day, an organization that’s recently won an award for how they develop
their team members, and they’re hearing, “Well, you’re doing more stuff. It’s
just the next thing. It’s just the flavor of the month.”
Kevin: Or we just … We do something. We got to do something. We got all these
leadership challenges so we’re going to spray everybody and pray that
something works. And well, the last thing didn’t work so we’ll change programs.
We’ll pick a new guru. We’ll find another expert. We’ll just change horses and
think that with a new expert, it will get better. We’re out there looking for the
magic bullet.
Kevin: But every once in a while, we get some glimmers of hope. We have one session
that goes really well, we have some anecdotal data about some leaders that
really benefited from some of the things that we implemented. So the glimmers
of hope keep us coming back to the well to keep doing it but at some level, we
get frustrated and we resign ourselves to well, it’s … we’re just going to get what
we’re going to get. Leadership development is what it is and we’ll get a little
improvement for a while, we’ll get a little blip and then things will settle back
down and eventually, we might give up.
Kevin: Now, I am not by nature a cynical person. So the things on this list may sound a
little cynical and they perhaps are and yet, here’s the fact. This is happening.
And I’m guessing that even if you’re like me and a more optimistic person, you
have probably felt some of these things. You probably heard some of these
things and I’m suggesting that we’ve got to stop the insanity. Oops. We’ve got to
stop the insanity. We’ve got to stop. If we want to make it better and we have
good solid organizational reasons to do it, we need to come up with a better
way to look at it.
Kevin: So my slide slipped ahead so let me take us to that slide because what I want to
share with you is a model. It’s what I promised you that I would share. So this is
going to be framework that we’re going to work on for a few minutes. Now, look
at this quickly. We’re going to go into each of these pieces a little bit more, but
look at this quickly. Notice that there are these two big things underneath of
leadership development. Don’t worry, later on, I’ll put some more words inside
of that center circle.
Kevin: But the point that I’m trying to make here is there’s more to this than just, let’s
do some leadership development. Let’s schedule a class. Let’s buy some great
materials from HRDQ and think we’ve solved the problem. What we need to do
is perhaps use some great materials from HRDQ as part of, excuse me, part of
what we’re doing but it’s got to be placed in a context. So what you see here is
there’s an organizational component or context, there’s a personal component
about the individual leaders who are going to be engaged in the leadership
Kevin: And then, only then can we really get at the leadership development stuff itself.
Most of us want to go immediately to the center circle, and I want to talk about
all three things a little bit first, okay? So excuse me, as I’ve already said, there
are three components. And if you want to have greater success at doing this, it’s
going to take all three. It’s going to take some time thinking about all three. So
it’s first things first which means what? It means the two components
underneath must be considered.
Kevin: If we want to improve the chances, we have great success with our
programming and with our processes. In other words, if we just keep
reinventing the center circle, we get all that stuff we just talked about a few
minutes ago. However good the stuff we build or use is, without the underlying
components, it’s never going to be as successful as we want it to be. And I would
say that in most organizations, the personal component is seldom considered.
Kevin: Now, if you’re sitting here and you’re a trainer, you say, “Well wait a minute, I’m
thinking about those things”, in the room, and that’s probably true. But what I’m
saying is we’re not strategically and systemically thinking about the stuff in that
personal component, and I’m going to get to a slide and talking about that a
little bit more, but I wanted to make that overall observation that sometimes,
people say, “Well, we think a little bit about the organizational piece”, and you
use it in context with what we developed for leadership development. But very
few people are spending much time on the personal component, but let’s talk
about each of the three now.
Kevin: And by the way, before I go any further, we will … I will probably stop for
questions here in a little while and then certainly, we will do it at the end. But if
you have them, since we have the survey, a synchronous way to ask them,
anytime you’ve got it, you go in and type it in, Sarah will see them and then we’ll
take care of them as we go. So you don’t have to necessarily hold your question,
you can ask it whenever. And we’ll stop a couple of times as well as at the end as
well, okay?
Kevin: Organizational component. The organizational component. Well, you can see
the slide there. You can see the pieces. It includes leadership commitment and a
whole lot more. Let’s walk through some of these pieces. First, leadership
commitment. Well, that’s not the first time you’ve heard that. We need senior
leadership commitment do anything. We’re going to do around leadership
development and that’s true. We do need the top to be committed, but that’s
not the only people I’m talking about here.
Kevin: I’m not just getting someone to buy in and write the check. I’m not just talking
about maybe having someone recording a video that we use in our
programming, although that’s a great idea or someone that comes and teaches
some small piece of the program, although that’s a great idea. That’s not the
only thing I’m talking about here. What I’m talking about here is the next level,
and what I mean by the next level is the leader of the leaders. The leader of the
supervisor of the people who you are going to be developing.
Kevin: They are a critical component to this. Do they understand what’s being taught?
Because if they don’t know what’s being taught, how can they support it in the
workplace? How can they coach to it? How can they expect it? If they’re not in
that loop, how … they are a critical part of the success and often, not included,
considered or time spent beyond nodding your head with what I just said to help
those folks really get involved. So the next thing is we’ve got to make sure that
whatever we develop in terms of developing our leaders is connected to our
purpose and our strategy.
Kevin: So the one comment, Sarah, that came up was the one about competencies,
right? Lots of organizations have created a list of competencies but the way that
that question was asked or the way that that challenge was asked was I think
very insightful because how … the challenge is how do we create the
competencies that match up with what we need in our organization which is I
think pretty much what was said. That’s the right way to ask the question.
Kevin: You can go anywhere and pull out competencies and no one would probably
argue that those are valuable. But the most important thing is what does it
mean to lead here? How do those leadership skills or competencies help us
achieve our strategies and help us reach our organizational purpose? Those are
the kinds of questions we’ve got to be asking. We’ve got to be connecting. The
leaders are the folks who are leading us in the direction of that purpose. They
are the people that are responsible for that strategy.
Kevin: We need to make sure that we’re building the skills, supporting the skills,
encouraging the skills, expecting the skills that are most valuable for us, given
our purpose, given our strategy, given our culture. And we have to think about
this as an investment because you don’t develop new leaders overnight. You
don’t make them highly successful overnight. One of the expectations there was
we got a whole bunch of brand new people leaders. They’ve been in the
organization, they know the organization but they don’t know how to lead. So
man, we’ve got to invest in them.
Kevin: You’re not going to solve it in a day or week or a short program. And when you
think about investing in anything, what is it? It’s a significant number that we’re
expecting a return on over time. It’s not an expense, it’s something that we’re
getting a return on that investment over time. We have to think about it that
way at all levels if we want this to make sense because the investment needs to
be tied to what we’re trying to accomplish in the organizational context in which
we are living and working. We have to have clear expectations.
Kevin: And what I mean here are that … at multiple levels. We need clear expectations
of what we want the leadership development process to achieve. We need clear
expectations from the organizational leaders as to how they will support the
leaders and the programs. We need clear expectations of those individual
leaders that they know what’s expected of them, they will what they will be held
accountable for. It’s super important. I could spend the whole rest of our time
just on this organizational component.
Kevin: I’m going to want to give you the rest of the framework and I want to give you …
While I think you’re probably getting … hopefully, you’re getting some great
ideas already, I’m going to give you a 12 item list of things that you can do as
promised. It will come from this framework, but let’s continue on. The second
component as you can see there is the personal component, and let’s talk about
that a little bit. This is the people who are going to be in the training in the
learning. These are your students if you will. These are the leaders we are
Kevin: We must ascertain their level of commitment to their own development and we
need to gain their commitment because if they’re not really all that excited
about it, probably not a really good investment. So we may have some
influencing to do to get people to a live of commitment that says, “I’m excited
about this and I want to get better as a leader.” We build commitment and
ascertain commitment and build commitment by asking questions to
understand what’s going on. And a big piece of this that we often leave out as
well is self-awareness.
Kevin: The most effective learners of anything as complex as leadership have to have
some level of self-awareness about where they are and what they are good at,
are not good at and all of that. And we need to build ways to help people be
more self-aware because once they are more self-aware, they’re likely to be
more committed. And self-awareness is such a critical skill in and of itself for
being a more effective leader that the more we can help people in that are, the
better off we will be not only for them as learners but as practitioners as well.
Kevin: Next, we want to make sure that we’re aligning expectations. So all that
expectation stuff we talked about on the organizational component, now, we’ve
got to make sure that these leaders know what’s expected of them during these
learning experiences and what’s expected of them when they come home from
those learning experiences. I use home as if they’re actually traveling. Of course,
they may not be maybe delivering it some way like we’re talking right now
Kevin: But what are the expectations of them? And that then, you’d be aligned with the
organizational ones. We want to fundamentally help people develop a
willingness to want to be there. That’s critical. And whatever we do, we have to
make sure people are thinking about and know that it will be expected of them
to do something with this when they get back. I spent the last two days with a
group of leaders in California and one of the things I asked them on the first day
is, or I told them on the first day is, “Listen. The most important question you
can ask yourself throughout this program is, now what? What am I going to go
back and do?”
Kevin: If we don’t have people thinking about that and knowing it’s expected of them
to do that when they get back, see, here is what we’re really talking about.
We’re talking about the fact that leaders are doing some stuff now. We want
them to do some different stuff and so we’re talking about creating habit
change. And I don’t think we often stop and think about the fact that whatever
kind of leadership development we’re doing is fundamentally about habit
Kevin: And now unless you’re … have a whole lot different experience than me,
changing a habit is hard. If you think about leaders, anything we’re going to do
as wanting for them to develop is about changing a habit. There’s a way they do
it now, we’re encouraging them to pull a different tool out of a toolkit and apply
it instead of what they have done before. It’s not just learning the new tool, it’s
knowing when to use it, being willing to use it, believing they can use it, that it
will work in their context and then actually doing it. We got to help Crete habit
Kevin: So we got to set leaders up to know that this is the expectation. This is what this
is all going to be. This isn’t going to just be flavor of the month. This isn’t just
going to be the thing, the next new thing, okay? The more we can get people
ready for that and understand that, the better chance we have of success. So
now, you’re all really dying for the center circle, so there it is. Now, I’ll actually
give you words inside of that circle, right?
Kevin: So I’m going to start in the middle where it says, principles. I believe that
whenever build whatever you buy around leadership, development should be
based on solid principles. And I know that there are a lot of people that are
saying that the world is changing and so people are changing and they want
different things and all those things. And certainly, the context of our work is
changing with things like this and things like other technologies and people
working remotely and all of those other things.
Kevin: And yet, the principles of leadership development, the principles of team
dynamics, the principles of human learning haven’t fundamentally changed. The
context may have changed but we’ve got to stay bedrock solid on principles.
Whatever you build, whatever you buy needs to be connected to that I believe.
We need to be making sure that we’re creating real learning which means more
than just death by PowerPoint.
Kevin: We’re going to be creating stuff that encourages people to actually be using it,
the bottom number on this list. You may have heard of the 70:20:10 model. And
if you haven’t, here it is in a nutshell that we tend to learn 70% of our job on the
job, 20% from other people and 10% from training or workshops, et cetera. So
what am I saying? I’m saying this can’t be about what’s the workshop look like?
Does the workshop need to be exceptional? Yeah. Do we need to use great
materials? of course. Do we need to have … Yes, yes, yes, yes. It’s not enough.
Kevin: So now, as you go back to the top of this list, you see three words in a row,
mindset, skillset, habit set. In my work with clients and in my work with
individual leaders, I’m becoming more convinced that these three things are
where we need to be going. Mindset, skillset, habit set. I see someone saying
the audio is going in and out. I’ll try to be careful to stay closer just in case it’s
just literally me, where I’m at so I’ll try to do better there.
Kevin: Mindset. What do I believe about leading? What do I believe about my ability to
lead? What is my level of confidence with this particular skill, et cetera, et
cetera? Without the right mindset, we can’t lead successfully. Without the right
mindset, we won’t even develop does skillset, okay? Skillset, most leadership
training ends up being about skillset. Now, I’ve already talked to you about the
importance of habit set, right?
Kevin: That’s important for sure. Mindset, skillset, habit set. I think if you take those
three ideas and keep them in mind in whatever you’re designing, whatever
you’re buying, whatever you’re building, if you’ll keep those things in mind,
you’ll have greater success. Notice the other two things … three things I haven’t
mentioned yet. One is it’s got … we got to think about this as a long term.
Kevin: You don’t learn to play the piano in one workshop. You learn to play the piano
by having some learning experiences by practicing in real life, by getting some
coaching and that’s the way … and listen. No one would expect us to learn the
piano the other way. And yet, leadership is far more complex than playing the
piano and yet we expect it to happen some other way. We’ve got to make sure
that whatever we’re doing is completely integrated into the work.
Kevin: That’s why that organizational component stuff is so important so we have the
right context, we have the right understanding. So when people are in a learning
experience, it makes sense and they can see how this is going to work in their
work. Super important, okay? I’m going to take a breath and before I go on,
Sarah, is there anything that’s come up specifically that you think now is the
time for me to address or that you want to share?
Sarah: Yeah. I can see there are some questions. There’s a lot around turnover in your
opening when you’re asking about leadership. And there is a really specific
question in here from Riley, but I think it’s a good one. I think it’s a good
moment to address this. But the question here is when turnover is incredibly
high under one leader, when do you terminate versus continuously engaging
them to improve their performance?
Kevin: Well, that is incredibly situational, and I think it’s the right question. And the
right answer will depend on a whole bunch of factors that I don’t have enough
information to give you a solid answer except that that’s the right question. And
if you’ve identified that that’s where we continue to have turnover, you’re right,
it’s that person’s skills that are part of it. So what I would say is if you’re going to
try to help develop them, you need to be thinking about it in a very targeted
Kevin: Chances are as people are leaving, you’re getting some exit interviewing, you
have some data, you have some things that are maybe the key reasons people
are leaving. So then, I would probably … If the decision is or when the decision is
that we want to try to help this person in the moment, right? We want to do
triage here, then I would say, “I want to know what those folks that work for
them, including those that are leaving are seeing as the biggest gaps.”
Kevin: So whether that’s through exit interviews, whether it’s through focus groups,
whatever that is, and then probably, I’m thinking about a coaching process,
right, with someone internal or external or whatever, a coaching process to help
target working on those very specific skills. But guess what, that person has to
have, if we went back to the personal component, they need to understand the
expectations, they need to have a willingness, they need to have a personal
commitment to this.
Kevin: If you don’t sense that they have that stuff, that’s when I’m saying, “Probably,
this isn’t the right fit.” But if you get the sense that they have those things or
you’ve ascertained that they do, then it’s probably not send them to another
piece of training, it’s probably much more targeted and it’s probably much more
about something that looks like coaching and mentoring to help them work on
very specific skills. That’s what I would say about that, Sarah.
Kevin: I want to go back to the overall turnover thing for a second because again, two
sides. If the turnover is of the leaders, if we do a better job of the things we’re
talking about today, they are less likely to leave because that’s one of the things
they’re probably looking for, is a chance to continue to grow as a leader. But if it
is turnover of staff reporting to the leaders and we need to get that solved,
right, because the expense that goes with that is astronomical.
Kevin: It’s the wrong webinar for us to talk about that, but man, if you start doing the
math at what it costs, and not just in terms of the onboarding of the new
people, but also of the experience lost and the opportunity cost and the
recruiting cost and the productivity, the timeline that it takes for that person to
get up … the new person to get up to a level of success. I’m telling you, it is
expensive and so we need to solve those problems as quickly as we can, okay?
Kevin: Anything else, Sarah, before we go on?
Sarah: No. We’ve got some other questions in here but I think you might be covering
some of this, so let’s continue and if not, we’re going to jump to those at the
Kevin: All right. I’m going to trust that you got that under control. So here we go. So
first of all, some big ideas. I promised you 12 specific things and they’re coming,
but I want to give you four big … I think it’s four big ideas here first. First of all,
this should be hopefully what you’re seeing here is that we’re not just finding a
thing to do, this needs to be holistic and not piecemeal, right? So Sarah is going
to talk to you about a product that I know well and that I think you find … we
find very helpful.
Kevin: But if that’s … You’re just going to go do that, that’s not likely to be successful.
As a part of something bigger, as a part of a system and a strategy, could be very
well what you need to do, okay? Think about what you’re doing from a systems
and strategy perspective. Think about it holistically. Think about having a plan.
Think about it as an investment and you’ll do these two bullets.
Kevin: And the next one is make sure that you have a learning focus to whatever you’re
doing so that real learning is happening and when we’re talking about leadership
development, we’re not talking about knowledge, we’re talking about skill,
we’re talking about application. So how do we help people get to the place using
their learning? The other big idea I want to share with you is that idea of
mindset, skillset, habit set and we’re spending a lot of time with clients, helping
them think about that and helping them think through how they … what they
build will have … will be addressing all of those things for individual leaders
along the way, mindset, skillset, habit set.
Kevin: So now, as promised, 12 specific things. And I got three slides. I got three slides.
So there are four on each of the slides, and they’re in numerical order. In part,
they’re sort of a priority order or timeline order, not perfectly such but a little
bit so. First of all, probably want to start sooner. What do I mean by start
sooner? I’m a big proponent of getting new leaders and someone said that
earlier. I got a bunch of brand new people managers.
Kevin: Man, if we don’t get people early in their time as a leader, what’s going to
happen is they’re going to develop habits from the first day and in a vacuum, the
habits they develop might not be very successful and the longer they do them
without correction or encouragement or any sort of feedback and coaching or
any other input, the harder it will be for those to change. So we need to start
sooner in terms of where we start with this process of developing our leaders.
Kevin: Another specific thing I would suggest is that you have develop leadership
involvement. And again, we talked about this at a couple of levels, senior level
as well as the leader of the leaders. We need to develop that leadership
development. If you’ve already got it, then you need to leverage it better, right?
Remember the value of that piece. Again, both top deck and the leader of the
Kevin: Next, you need to define your organizational purpose and context for doing
leadership development. It should be seen as a part of the overall strategy and
we should know how the leadership development stuff fits with what we’re
trying to do as an organization, right? And then as I’ve already said, I’ll say it
again, we need to think investment. Now, these four things are big frontend
things. That’s all true. And you’re saying, “But Kevin, you haven’t said anything
about what I should do to build the training yet.”
Kevin: Well, you’re right because that’s not what you should think about first, right?
Everything that you do needs to connect to the organizational side. It’s that
organizational component that we talked about, okay? Next, number five, make
the build/buy/blend decision. So what do I mean by that? What I mean is are we
going to build everything? Are we going to buy everything or are we going to
have some combination of those things, right?
Kevin: And what I’m suggesting is, and I’m going to say it later, that I believe that in
almost every case, the right answer is some sort of blend and I’m going to
suggest that there are tremendous resources from HRDQ as just one example,
from us as a second example where you can bring someone else’s materials in to
help you or you can bring some processes in to help you. But if you just bring
them in, lock, stock and barrel and drop them in by themselves, you’re heading
toward flavor of the month, and that’s not what you want.
Kevin: You want to make a conscious decision about how we’re going to invest our
dollars and our time and our resources related to this. So make the
build/buy/blend decision. Next, create understanding and readiness. Now, we
can start talking to the learners about what this is going to look like and what’s
going to be expected of them and helping them build some anticipation for what
they’re going to get, right?
Kevin: Now, all the way down to number seven, we can actually talk about the learning
experiences themselves, right, whatever those are. Whether those are online,
whether those are e-learning, whether those are face to face, whatever they
are, make sure that they’re focused on principles and most of all, that they’re
focused on application.
Kevin: It’s interesting, Sarah and I were talking before we started the webinar and she
said that they’re working on a bunch of their top products to make sure that
they’re up to date. What I bet that they’re going to find is because their stuff is
based on principles, yeah, they’ll do some polishing but they’re not going to
make wholesale changes because it’s already based on solid research, on
principles network and so make sure that what you build does that.
Kevin: Here’s why that’s important. Not only will it be the most successful but it’s also
the best investment because why? Because it’s not going to go out of style. It’s
not flavor of the month. Number eight is multiple methods integrated learning.
If we’re really serious about it being learning, then it’s not just about a workshop
as good as that workshop might be. It’s not enough.
Kevin: Training is an event, learning is a process, leadership development is something
we’re doing over the long haul, it’s got to be integrated into the work, there’s
got to be expectations, there’s got to be practice, there’s got to be all those
things. And in the session alone, that’s not enough. Maybe you get skillset, but
you don’t get … And maybe if it’s really well-designed, you get some mindset but
you’re not going to get habit set in an event, okay?
Kevin: Number nine. Create accountability for all. Certainly, we want our leaders to be
those in the program, in the learning experiences to have that accountability for
applying what they’re learning, but there’s accountability of those peoples’
leaders too, right, to do what they can to support people, to hold them
accountable and help them be accountable. Those leaders of leaders, those
supervisors of those attendees need to be accountable as well, and most of us
don’t do that well enough.
Kevin: And speaking of coaching, I’m a firm believer that if we want to improve skills as
complex as leadership skills, that we need to include coaching and mentoring in
whatever we build. There’s a bunch of ways that you can do this. It might be
pure coaching, it may look more like pure mentoring, it may be some
combination, may be internal coaches, external coaches, include coaching in
what you’re doing. Number 11, make sure that you’re expecting habit change.
Ultimately, that’s what we’re after. And lastly, we got to be tracking people’s
progress. Have ways to measure and have metrics around what we’re trying to
do, okay?
Kevin: So now, it leaves me to the, perhaps the most important questions of our time
together. Here it is. Where are you, right? So I’m going to challenge you to look
back at those 12 things and say, where are our gaps? You’re probably doing
some of those 12 things pretty well. You may be doing some of those 12 things
with great … high levels of excellence, right? So I’m saying look for the gaps and
then start where you are.
Kevin: Maybe you’re saying, “We got nothing.” Maybe you’re saying, “We got a lot of
pieces and we need to make sure it’s all cohesive and hoked together.” Start
from where you are and work from there. Realize that wherever you are, you
are on a journey. You’re taking your leaders on a journey to get better, okay?
You need to realize that it’s a journey for them and you need to realize it is a
journey for the organization to continue to build this out to support them
because at some point, as you build a lot of this, you’re going to get this
question, okay, so what’s next?
Kevin: So there’s always going to be a journey for you as the designers and the owners
of the development process and that’s always a journey for the leaders. And
then you got to make sure that you’re willing to invest in that journey wherever
… again, starting from wherever you are, okay? Starting from wherever you are.
So this is important. All right, we go back to where we started. I would say that
it’s … You really can’t afford not to do this.
Kevin: Unless your organization … Unless everything is perfect in your organization,
which it isn’t, or you wouldn’t be here, one of the best investments that you can
make in your organization is in the success and the skills of your leaders if you
do it in the ways we’ve talked about here. Not necessarily if you do it the way
we have always done it, but if you do it in the ways we’ve talked about here, you
really can’t afford not to do it.
Kevin: And I believe, and I hinted at this earlier, I don’t think you can do it alone. I think
that you need help and I would like to hope that this webinar is one form of
help. I would like to hope that you’re going to look to some of the tools and
resources HRDQ can provide you as a way to help. But the point is I don’t think
you can do it alone. You need external perspectives. You need external help.
Kevin: I have rarely met the learning and development organization that felt like they
could take care of everything as talented as they might be. You can’t do it alone
and you can’t, you cannot completely outsource it. Please don’t try to
completely outsource it because if you’ve taken anything I’ve said to heart, you
know that that one whole piece, the organizational component, you can’t
outsource it. You can get help to help you understand some of that, to help you
to articulate it. You probably can do all of this alone but you certainly don’t just
try to write a check. Even a big one.
Kevin: Doing that is not going to give you the results that you want either, but I don’t
care who you outsource it to. That’s not the right answer. And that’s probably
not what you expected me to say, but it’s true. It’s true. We would love to help
and I know you’re going to hear about some things that can help you. Man, do
not try to outsource it alone because it’s not going to work.
Kevin: So there’s the magic question cube. Sarah? So we’ve got a few minutes. So why
don’t you tell me what you’re seeing?
Sarah: Yeah. So we’ve got a couple of people who are asking about senior leadership in
particular. So these two go together. The first question here is what can you do
when the most … when most of the senior leadership is part of the problem?
And then another person is asking, how do you address it when the top brass
sends out blanket statements and then it never gets down through all the levels
and so messaging gets disjointed in there?
Sarah: So can you speak a little bit about how do you manage that, the senior
leadership element?
Kevin: Well, let’s take them separate. Neither one are unique to you, the person who
asked the question. Let’s take the last one first. The bigger your organization,
the bigger that challenge is going to be for sure, right? There’s no question
about it. And so it becomes just a matter of really building clear communication
strategies. And if you really do have ownership at the highest levels, if you have
the top brass, to use those words, really on board, then you probably need to let
them know that while they feel like they’re communicating it, the message is
being sent, it’s not being received throughout the whole organization.
Kevin: So there’s probably time spent around the communication plan and how do we
… That’s probably worthy of a whole webinar but that’s where I would start
there. But the other question is a really interesting one, right? Part of our
development problem is our top people. They need to get better and they don’t
think they do. Well, you saw my slide earlier where there was that word … those
words self-awareness.
Kevin: We maybe need to help people get a little more self-aware. And one of the
questions I see in there somewhere I think without my glasses on was
something about a 360 assessment. 360 assessments, you didn’t hear me
mention specifically, they can be incredibly valuable as a tracking tool but they
can be an incredibly valuable tool on the frontend to build that personal
awareness, that personal commitment to say, “Oh, I’m not quite as good or as
effective as I thought.”
Kevin: So a well-done 360 process, meaning, a good assessment of course but with
some skilled coaching to help understand what it means and what it doesn’t
mean and what to do with it can be very helpful. So if you’ve got leaders at any
level, but especially at the highest level, you need to try to get them to become
more self-aware and perhaps, again, big questions that we can’t solve
completely in the time we have, but a 360 might be a tool that could help in
Sarah: Great.
Kevin: What else you got Sarah? I’m sorry … Sorry.
Sarah: That’s okay. We have a lot of questions coming in. So it’s awesome. Great
participation. So keep those questions coming right there in your go-to webinar
panel. So we have people talking here about measuring and whether that’s an
internal rating system for leaders, an internal survey, we’ve got some
suggestions around that to track team sentiments as to how leaders are doing
and even the bigger picture, how.
Sarah: How do you measure? How do you see if leadership development is working?
Kevin: Well, I think we can certainly measure. There are certain things we can measure
that people will take note of which are things like turnover, right? We’ve talked
about that a lot. Certainly, if turnover is dropping, and we’ve been doing some
investing in this area, that’s probably a factor, right? And it certainly could be
one of the factors. We want to be thinking about other things that were already
measuring that could help us in this regard.
Kevin: Like you may be doing employee engagement surveys or all employee surveys of
some sort. There are probably some questions on there that give us some clues
indirectly, maybe some questions that are directly related to leadership skills
where the gaps might be around coaching communication, et cetera, et cetera.
And if you do that as an ongoing basis, you could think about including some
questions or adding some questions around that if that would be helpful.
Kevin: So I would always think about, what am I already doing that we can use to help
us think about this where you can benchmark start to finish? Certainly, 360
assessments, if they’re used, can be a way to track progress as well, but the idea
of getting feedback from the user of the leadership, right, the team, is a really
important piece of that puzzle for sure.
Sarah: Patricia here actually brings up, we’ve talked a lot about turnover and she brings
up sort of the opposite challenge in her organization. Suppose your organization
does not have turnover, so you have people leaders that have been with the
organization a long, long time?
Kevin: Well, it’s like a lot of things. So all of the people that have turnover saying,
“Man, I’d rather I trade you”, so … And yet, I hear Patricia, what you’re asking.
And what I think I’m hearing inside of that is they’ve been here a long time so
we have some complacency, right? And maybe externally, we would say they
could get better. They could build their skills, right? They’re thinking, well, you
need leadership development for other people but not for me. So we’re back to
how do we help people get a better mirror in front of them about how they’re
Kevin: If we can help people get very excited about the organization’s direction and the
organization’s [inaudible 00:55:46], that can create new and renewed meaning
for us about what do we need to do to get better. If the organization is changing
and now, the organization needs something new from me, so my point is, it’s
really now, we’re thinking about the change process and helping those
individuals that might have been there a long time.
Kevin: And again, there are great advantages to that but Patricia, I hear what you’re
saying. There’s some disadvantages and I’m guessing that one of those might be
complacency, okay?
Sarah: Yeah. And another question is coming in on your thoughts around what do you
think about a one on one meeting between leader and staff? So an intact team
with their leader meeting around those.
Kevin: I think there’s … it depends on a number of factors including what’s the level of
trust amongst those people. When I think of that, what I think of most
frequently is that there’s a facilitator, perhaps someone that’s in this … on this
call, is facilitating those or perhaps what’s happening is that the group has a
conversation in more like a focus group kind of thing with a facilitator and
gathers a bunch of feedback and then perhaps, we bring the leader in with a
summary of that to then talk about it and say what we do to get better.
Kevin: That can be a very effective process. I would say in most cases, you want a third
party there to help facilitate the flow and keep it from getting off-track and
keeping us from some landmines perhaps. That’s probably the last one. We
probably need to move on, huh?
Sarah: Yup.
Kevin: So I just have a couple more slides, one that says, now what? My question is,
what are you going to go do, right? Because this is too important to not do
something. There’s a huge cost to poor leadership. I know you have frustration
and stress, so there’s a lot of engagement here. I kept seeing the questions fly
by here. That’s really here. Hopefully, this was helpful to you. You got lost
productivity, you’ve got reduced results in what you want and so that’s where
you are.
Kevin: So you got some new ideas today hopefully. Hopefully, you think you need …
You may know you need some help. I’ll tell you how you can get ahold of us and
some help that you will get from Sarah as well. You may not know your exact
next steps so use this to start an organizational conversation. And I think Sarah
will tell you how you can let other people watch this. So if this was helpful and
you want to use this to help start an organizational conversation, I’d encourage
you to do that.
Kevin: Use the resources that you already have around you, including HRDQ and us.
And if you want to get ahold of us, it’s very easy. Just go
info@kevineikenberry.com and you can get ahold of us. And I’ve got two things
for you real quick. We have a webinar that we do in a recurring basis that’s
specifically about developing your new supervisors. So I know that that was a
question that came up. So if that’s something you’d like to know more about,
send an email to info@kevineikenberry.com and we’ll get you info about that.
Kevin: We do it on a recurring basis. Make sure that you get access to that. We have
another thing coming up in the future and again, we do it on a recurring basis,
that really gets that leadership development around mindset, skillset habit set
and you can get on the list to learn more about that. When the time comes, I go
into kevineikenberry.com/way.
Kevin: And with that, I’m going to go to the last slide, Sarah, which I believe is all you.
Sarah: Yes. Thank you so much Kevin, and thank you everybody for participating today.
We’ve had some really great questions. We have a lot of people who are asking
about Kevin’s product. So for those that aren’t familiar with it, it is the
Remarkable Leadership Program and it’s his 12th modular program that goes
into those specific areas that Kevin shared today. So you can then target those
directly into your organization when you think about the next steps that you’re
going to. You can pick and choose out of those 12.
Sarah: There’s a really thorough facilitator set that helps you deliver internally and
there is then the practical application that you can use through the workbook.
So you can pick through those 12 modules, there’s a workbook per module that
works really well. And if you are interested in having help delivering the training,
definitely reach out. We provide train the trainer, we provide onsite or virtual
delivery as well as consulting services.
Sarah: So HRDQ and Kevin and his group are here to definitely help you with all of your
leadership needs.
Kevin: Sarah, thank you so much for having me. It was a pleasure to have you. And as I
said, I’ve been looking at some of these questions. If you’ve got other things that
you wanted to know, anybody, you can drop me a note,
info@kevineikenberry.com. We’ll get to meet and I’ll be happy to help any way I
Sarah: Absolutely. And we’ll stay on the line here for couple of seconds so you can type
in your questions and we’ll definitely get those back out to you. And we look
forward to seeing you on our next webinar. Thanks Kevin.
Kevin: Thanks everybody.


bio picture

Kevin Eikenberry is the Chief Potential Officer of The Eikenberry Group, a learning and consulting company that provides a wide range of services, including training delivery and design, facilitation, leadership coaching, organizational consulting, and speaking services. His expertise includes leadership, teams, and facilitation. Kevin has worked with many major organizations such as Cirque du Soleil, Chevron, John Deere, and Southwest Airlines. In addition, he is the author of many books, including Remarkable Leadership- Unleashing your Leadership Potential One Skill at a Time, From Bud to Boss- Secrets to a Successful Transition to Remarkable Leadership, and Vantagepoints on Learning and Life. He was recently named by Inc.com as one of the top 100 Management and Leadership Thinkers in the world.

Contact Kevin at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kevineikenberry/


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