If we accept the fact that not all leaders are “born,” then we need to know something about how leadership can be developed. What can individuals and organizations do to ensure that they have the leadership talent which is needed given the leader—follower—situation triad?
Underlining my personal belief in the efficacy of leadership development through experience, each student in the class is being given the opportunity to experientially develop two leadership skills as part of the course. These are the leadership experiences which you will be documenting as part of your assignments and the requirements are clearly outlined in the syllabus. If you haven’t begun working on your first experiential exercise, the leadership skill, you need to get started this week.
Leadership development can also be done through education and training. University courses such as this would fall into this category. Corporations also spend a great deal of time and money designing leadership development programs. Some of these programs are contracted to organizations such as the Center for Leadership Development in Escondido, California, home of Paul Hersey and Situational Leadership. Each year, people from all over the world are trained in the Situational Leadership model and coached in how to apply it within their organizations. Other programs like adventure learning promise leadership training from a different angle. You only have to search “adventure learning” and “leadership” in Google to see how many companies now provide off-site, wilderness and other types of learning experiences for corporations. And yet another effective way to develop leaders is through mentoring programs.