On My Walk (Leadership Development)

The growth and development of people is the highest calling of leadership.
— Harvey Firestone

I wrapped up my listen of Michael A. Roberto's outstanding work, Transformation Leadership: How Leaders Change Teams, Companies, and Organizations on my walk this morning. Roberto is the Trustee Professor of Management at Bryant University in Smithfield, RI. He also taught at the Harvard Business School for a number of years.

Roberto addressed the necessity of leadership development and offered several practical ways to take action.

The importance of leadership development:

  • “The Hewlett-Packard board has committed sins over the last 10 years. They have not done one of the primary jobs of a board, which is to prepare the next generation of leadership.” Jack Welch
  • “Every board needs to have a name, in case the CEO gets hit by a bus, who is the person who takes charge, even in an interim period, so that the company is not without a CEO, is not without a leader? That should be board effectiveness 101. You cannot stand headless for a period of time without a leader." Ana Dutra, CEO Korn/Ferry Leadership and Talent Consulting.
  • Great companies “grow” their own leaders. Michael A. Roberto

How To Develop Future Leaders

What does it take to have great leadership development in your organization? Roberto highlights these priorities:

  • Invest time and money.
  • Identify promising leaders early.
  • Choose assignments strategically.
  • Develop leaders within their current jobs.
  • Be passionate about feedback and support.
  • Develop teams, not just individuals.
  • Exert leadership through inspiration.
  • Encourage leaders to be active in their communities.
  • Make leadership development part of the culture.
  • Build leaders by building teams, not just individuals.

Leadership development is every leader's responsibility. What can you do to take action today?

And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others.
— 2 Timothy 2:2 NIV

You can discover more about the role of leadership development in transformational leadership by looking at Professor Roberto's Great Courses Program referenced below.