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Leadership Development: It's not about size.

Leadership development is important for organizations of every size.

Too often, organizations I speak to consider leadership development to be only for large businesses. Once they grow, then they'll want to invest in their team and leaders.

Every organization needs to remember the direction they are going in now will determine their destination in the future.

It's similar to the idea of a large ship...a small change in course now will have a dramatic impact on your final port. You don't want to end up in Greenland if you're targeting New York.

If you're building an organization, you need to be intentional about leadership and team development today, not later. Build a solid foundation and you will reap the rewards forever.

If you choose to wait, you run the risk of having a team that is out of balance, or leaders who are pitching out of their league. Conflict will increase, communication will decrease.

You may not even notice some of the results of ignoring leadership development. You will have higher turnover, but you may attribute it to something else. And more importantly, you will be leaving unseen productivity and benefit behind as you chart your course.

According to Gallup, 70% of employee engagement is because of managers in an organization. They haven't been equipped or trained to lead properly. And it is hurting organizations in big ways.

Here are three ways to invest in your leadership and teams, regardless of the size of your organization:

  1. Clarify your vision and values - these need to be known and embedded in your team. These can inspire and unify your team. And the cost for this? Free. Just take the time and get it done.

  2. Communicate more - studies show that leaders think they're good at communicating, but in actuality, they are not. Chances are, you're not as good at it as you think you are. Ask you're team how they're doing, how you can help, and then listen. You'll probably see some immediate impact.

  3. Invest in their strengths - studies show that when people understand their innate talents and are able to use them every day at work, they're more productive, happier, and more unified. My recommendation is to use the CliftonStrengths assessment tool, used in over 90% of the Fortune 500, and taken over 24 million times around the globe. There is some cost to this solution, but the ROI is proven and impactful.

They say the best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago, and the second-best time is now. That's the same when it comes to leadership development - start as soon as you're able to. The impact you receive will provide an ROI for years to come.

Want to go to New York? Build your team properly now, or you might just end up in Greenland.

Questions about leadership development for you or your team? Cantera Leadership is available to help.

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