Leadership Development Programs Need to Be More Accountable
Many believe that leadership growth is not something that can be quantifiably measured . Leadership experts regularly expound on how well their leadership development training works without any proof to substantiate their claims. When asked about how they know it works, the answers typically fall into 2 categories, “We can tell” or the dreaded, “We believe it worked.” Neither of these are acceptable to an organization or an individual that has spent their time and money for the training. With the right tool, a well-designed leadership development training program can easily be quantifiably measured.
“If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.”
– Peter Drucker
I have spent most of my career analyzing, predicting, researching and teaching consumer/human behavior for some of the leading companies in the country. So, when I turned my attention to improving leadership 7 years ago, a colleague challenged me to determine how to quantifiably measure leadership improvement to help companies calculate a return on investment on their leadership development programs. I gladly accepted the challenge.
“If you don’t measure leadership, you can’t improve it.”
– J. Bryan Bennett
Leadership is primarily a behavior issue. Better leaders get better results because they can effectively direct and inspire their people to perform their best. Measuring leadership growth not only requires leadership development expertise, but also requires experience in the use and implementation of other disciplines, specifically human behavior, market research and data analysis.
Human behavior is the potential and expressed capacity (mentally, physically, and socially) of human individuals or groups to respond to internal and external stimuli throughout their life. It is the psychology behind motivations and actions. It is needed to help determine what to measure in leadership development. I have over 20 years of experience analyzing and predicting behavior for Fortune 500 client’s customer relationship marketing initiatives as well as several years of teaching customer behavior courses at a leading university.
Market research is the activity of gathering information about consumers’ needs and preferences. It is used to craft a well-design research instrument with easily understood and meaningful questions. I have been teaching marketing, marketing research and integrated marketing courses at several universities for the last 16 years. I have also had a whitepaper on customer-centric marketing published in an international business journal.
Data analytics is the practice of deriving useful information from data to form actionable insights. The data must be summarized and presented to clearly communicate the most important variations and conclusions. It is needed to analyze and create impactful visualizations of the results. My extensive work in data analytics is world renowned and has been recognized by Gartner. I am the architect of Microsoft’s first global analytics department. I also have 14 years of experience teaching analytics and analytics visualizations at a leading university.
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