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There’s a Leadership Crisis Afoot!

By: Anne Dranitsaris
April 25, 2019
   4 min read 

Leaders don’t know how to lead people and are creating a leadership crisis by not providing development for current and next-gen leaders. Where are your leaders of tomorrow coming from if you aren’t getting them ready today?

We speak to clients every day about the challenges of leading without the benefit of development. We also have multiple clients who we train on how to manage their boss’ dysfunctional leadership behavior because they don’t know how to lead people. It’s no surprise that next-generation leadership hopefuls are scrambling to figure out how to follow their chaotic or permissive leaders and who to go to for coaching and mentoring because their boss doesn’t know how. 

Current leaders are creating a leadership crisis in politics as well as in large and small businesses across North America. Whether its leaders who use ego-driven, autocratic behaviors or the overly inclusive, permissive leaders who let employees do what they want, leaders aren’t Leading With Authority. Adaptive, dysfunctional leadership has become the new norm, and there is a crisis that is only going to get worse as more leaders emulate dysfunctional behavior because it seems to be everywhere. 

Studies show that organizations that invest in leadership development perform better than those that do not. However, research also shows that while developing leadership capacity is a top priority for companies, only a minority report investing in leadership development programs. Strong leaders are required to help organizations thrive and the quality of leadership, more than any other single factor, determines the success or failure of an organization. Despite this, senior leaders and organizations aren’t putting the time and resources into developing leaders and continue to hire and promote people without the required leadership competence.

While there are many causes of the crisis in leadership, here are the top three:

Cause #1: Leadership is the only profession without credentials

While developing leadership skills and competence before starting a career as a leader makes sense, it rarely happens. That’s because no credentials are required to do the job. It’s still common practice to hire or promote people to senior management and leadership roles without any training or role specific development.  

Cause #2: Senior leaders abdicate responsibility for developing next-gen leaders

Leaders have a bad habit of assuming it’s the newly minted leader’s responsibility to figure things out instead of making sure they get the development, training, and coaching they need. Senior leaders may not have the training on how to teach, mentor and coach new leaders, so they abdicate their responsibility and don’t get involved. Young leaders end up trying to lead, but never really knowing how.   

Cause #3: We wait too long to develop leaders

Organizations wait far, far too long to start developing leaders. Research shows that most managers do not receive training until they have been in their role for almost ten years. Many are promoted into leadership roles continuing to manage because they don’t know how to lead. During the past 20 years, we have conducted numerous leadership development programs with thousands of senior leaders across a wide spectrum of industries. Less than 5% of participants had any formal training.  

Is your organization a victim of the current leadership crisis? 

Find out more about the leadership crisis and what it truly takes to lead with authority and potency. Our latest book, So, You Think You Can Lead?, is now available.

Caliber Leadership Systems is a Toronto & San Diego based firm specializing in behavioural change and leadership development. The co-founders have written over a hundred books on personality development, behavioural change and achieving potential including Who Are You Meant to Be?. Their new book, So, You Think You Can Lead?, was released April 2019. Get Your Copy Today!

Originally Published on Anne Dranitsaris, Ph.D. LinkedIn Account on April 22, 2019