Guidance on leadership development & strategic planning.

How to Get the Most Out of Virtual Leadership Training Sessions

By Leadership Resources 06/27/2022
Virtual training session video call

Virtual leadership training is the perfect opportunity to take bold steps forward in your company’s leadership development plan. In a world that’s increasingly digital, virtual coaching fits right in.

Today’s workforce is a hybrid mix of in-person and remote workers. A recent Gallup poll found that 45% of all Americans work remotely at least partially, and 25% are now exclusively working remotely.

When it’s time for your company to engage these workers in virtual leadership development activities, certain techniques make the most impact. Here’s how to get the most out of your virtual business leadership coaching.

What is Virtual Leadership Training?

Before you begin, plan to set aside enough time for your participants to focus on the topic without other interruptions. To maximize buy-in and productivity, be willing to schedule sessions during nontraditional hours that best suit your remote and virtual participants. 

Decide on an overall timeframe and how the sessions will be divided into a series of virtual interactions. How you divide up your program depends on your goals, timeframe, and the individual needs of your participants. 

Some virtual leadership training programs take place in short bi-weekly sessions for six weeks to six months. Other seminars are longer, more intensive, multi-hour sessions that take place less often.

Arrange Reliable Virtual Communication Methods

In a traditional classroom setting, it’s fairly easy to control how the room is set up. As long as everyone has a chair, you likely have a productive session with in-person connections between the leadership coach and the participants.

Contrast this with a virtual leadership training setup. The individual settings of each participant vary widely from professional settings to personal living rooms. Everyone is relying on their computers, smartphones, and audiovisual equipment to work smoothly throughout the experience. The leadership development coach can’t control as much of the experience as they could in person, although an experienced coach has a strong background in virtual coaching.

To combat the challenges of the virtual environment, establish how communication will take place well in advance. Set standards for communication methods, times, and professional boundaries. Using Zoom meetings, for example, give everyone ample time to set up Zoom on their devices. 

Also, prepare everyone with a bit of testing to ensure things will work correctly for the virtual leadership development activities. Encourage them to share any technical issues that could interfere with your upcoming sessions and proactively resolve them in advance.

Take Advantage of Graphs, Clips, Chats, and More

Virtual business leadership coaching is the perfect setting for digital features and options that enhance learning. Seize the opportunity to provide graphs, charts, video clips, and other educational materials that support the educational experience.

The chat function on your videoconferencing software offers an excellent way to boost communication and build buy-in. Encourage participants to answer questions and share their concerns throughout the leadership development process. 

Incorporate Breaks and Catch-ups

Some participants will inevitably miss virtual sessions or miss out on portions of sessions due to lost connections, interruptions, illness, and more. Head off any gaps in learning by offering catch-up sessions and emailed materials that keep everyone on track. 

Take the shame out of being absent! It’s just a part of virtual learning and shouldn’t slow down the leadership development process.

And remember, remote learning can be just as demanding and draining as any other type of work. Allow for plenty of breaks, especially if you’re hosting long sessions. Encourage your participants to refresh their minds and bodies so they can continue to learn and work productively.

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Choose the Right Virtual Leadership Development Coach

Get the most out of your company’s virtual leadership development activities by working strategically. Provide your team with the resources they need to succeed. Experts say the best way to make a meaningful and lasting impact is with virtual leadership development programs instead of one-off virtual training programs

Leadership Resources provides customized virtual business leadership coaching services for thousands of successful companies around the world. To learn more about our wide range of individualized leadership programs, please contact Leadership Resources. We’re here to help you accomplish your goals, whether in person or virtually!

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How to Create an Effective Leadership Development Plan

By Leadership Resources 06/20/2022
Person writing a plan

Every company has goals for the future, but some companies are more effective than others at accomplishing their goals. What separates a successful company from the rest?

The secret lies in creating a leadership development plan that serves as a roadmap for your company’s emerging leaders. This, in turn, allows productive steps toward success like goal-setting, allotting resources, following action plans, and retaining key leaders who inspire everyone to accomplish great things.

Here’s how to create and implement an effective leadership development program for your organization.

Why Is Leadership Development Important?

Today’s sophisticated leadership development programs are designed to build a richer and deeper talent pipeline. As a result, organizations can leverage their talent pools to create more sustainable success. Organizations with higher leadership maturity rates are nearly 11 times more likely to have a high percentage of talent builders. Developing leadership skills in organizations can increase the retention rate of talented employees and decrease turnover.

Download the whitepaper Identify and Develop High Potential Leaders of your Organization

Begin with the Right Frame of Mind

Before you begin a new leadership development plan, take the time to prepare for this new stage in your company’s lifecycle. Observe your company from a neutral point of view and spend some time thinking about how things are vs. how they should be.

Cultivate an open state of mind through self-care and self-reflection. Encourage your entire organization to remain open to growth and change, from the executives to the lower level employees on the front lines.

Consider leadership development assessment questions like:

  • Do your existing and developing leaders share a growth mindset?
  • Is there a clear plan for the future at your company?
  • What are your company’s goals, and are they realistic?
  • Will your company culture accept or reject dramatic change?
  • Do you have the people, resources, time, and structure to grow rapidly?
  • How could this organization benefit from leadership development?
  • Do you need a business consultant/leadership coach to guide you?

Asking these questions is a huge and important first step. However, the next stage is even more challenging: Sparking meaningful, long-lasting change within your organization.

Engage with a Business Strategy Consultant

Most companies find it difficult to evolve without the help of a business strategy consultant. Talented, experienced business consultants think strategically and teach leaders how to expand the skills it takes for the entire operation to embrace change and seize new opportunities.

Schedule a series of business consulting sessions that will allow you to get to know your leadership coach and understand their process. Ask questions to ensure there’s a good coach-team match between your consultant and your company.

How your consultant engages with your company will depend on your needs, current status, goals, and more. Your consultant can help you achieve essential strategic leadership activities like:

  • Creating an entirely new business/leadership plan from scratch
  • Revising an existing business plan to make it more effective
  • Developing exceptional leaders within your ranks
  • Building a solid hiring/retention plan
  • Inspiring your workforce and building company morale
  • Using leadership to survive tough periods like mergers and financial downturns
  • Managing growth during periods of rapid expansion
  • Creating leadership succession plans and planning strategically for the future

Set Goals and Measures of Success

Now it’s time to decide what leadership development success looks like for your organization. It’s exciting to see success on the horizon, but how will you get there? 

Work with your leadership coach to decide which measures and metrics you’ll use to track your success. Establish your current status and create benchmarks that will help you see your progress as you move forward toward your goals.

Smart goal-setting is typically one of the most challenging aspects of creating an effective leadership plan. For example, you might have aggressive sales goals for the end of the year, but there’s high turnover among your sales and marketing leaders. A smart goal will consider all contributing factors to ensure that the goal is achievable.

Another common challenge is a lack of emotionally intelligent leadership, which hampers a company’s ability to adapt and grow. Leaders with high emotional intelligence (EQ) can manage interpersonal interactions smoothly and productively. But a company with too many low-EQ leaders often has conflicts that interfere with productivity.

Emotionally Intelligent Leaders White paper - Download

A good business strategy consultant helps you get to the bottom of issues like these and understand what’s at the core of your company’s persistent roadblocks. Perhaps you need to refine your company’s leadership development programs and implement new strategies that support growth and success.

Launching Your Effective Leadership Development Program

The best leadership development plan in the world won’t work unless you implement your plan effectively. Your team needs the leadership skills and resources it takes to move forward with confidence. 

For a meaningful, lasting impact on your organization, experts recommend ongoing leadership development programs as opposed to one-off training programs. At Leadership Resources, we have a long history of providing robust and customized leadership development programs for thousands of successful companies around the world.

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What Makes a Good Leadership Coach?

By Leadership Resources 06/13/2022
Leader and group concentrating

Working with a leadership coach is one of the best ways to identify and develop leaders in your company. According to the International Society for Performance Improvement, leadership coaching has a 221% return on investment. An effective business strategy consultant supports positive leadership behaviors and helps create a clear plan everyone can accomplish together.

The first challenge, of course, is finding the right leadership coach. Choosing a leadership coach that fits into your organizational mindset for developing leaders can be a tricky task. Here are the key qualities of the best kind of business strategy consultant who will be the right fit for your organization.

Growth Mindset vs Fixed Mindset

Mindset is extremely important when it comes to developing leaders. Do you know the difference between a growth mindset vs a fixed mindset?

A fixed mindset holds the belief that no matter how much you try, change is impossible or impractical. When someone has a fixed mindset, they’re not open-minded enough to embrace change and often make decisions based on fear and assumptions.

By contrast, a growth mindset welcomes the opportunity to learn more and try new things. Someone with a growth mindset accepts that others have things to teach them, so they remain a “student of life” who’s always looking to expand their understanding of the world. For developing leaders in an organization, a leadership coach with a growth mindset is ideal.

In a business setting, a fixed mindset is a leadership limiter, and a growth mindset is a leadership accelerator. It’s almost impossible for someone with a fixed mindset to serve effectively in the role of a leadership coach. That’s why so many successful business strategy consultants have plenty of experience putting their growth mindsets to good use.

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Clarity in Focus

Vagueness and ambiguity are contrary to the clarity it takes to focus on your business goals. There’s little value in receiving general advice that doesn’t necessarily apply to your unique situation.

Look for a leadership coach who provides the focus and clarity your team needs. Many leadership coaches are capable of providing basic advice that would benefit any run-of-the-mill company, but you need an experienced pro who provides specific and individualized insights.

Remember, a business strategy consultant isn’t a magician. They’ll need your company’s help and effort to make the process worthwhile. Stay engaged with them and be prepared to answer questions that lead to revelations about how you do business and how things could be better.

Strategic Thinking

Strategic thinking and strategic planning are essential skills for any great leadership coach. Your coach should be methodical in their thinking as they take systematic steps to help you identify and address pressing leadership and operational issues. 

Examine your company’s existing strategic plan with your coach’s help and locate gaps that aren’t currently addressed. Set goals and timeframes for accomplishing new things, and work with your leadership coach to determine which roadblocks might be standing in the way.

When your leadership coach is a strategic thinker, they’ll help you proactively anticipate issues before they can become catastrophes. Strategic thinking also goes hand in hand with adaptability, which is addressed in more detail below. 

Adaptability and Flexibility

A talented business strategy consultant uses an adaptive leadership style to adjust their techniques for each company they serve. When they encounter new information and fresh challenges, they make nimble course adjustments to stay on the path to success.

Some companies have problems that are so deeply ingrained that the company now has a dangerous or unhealthy culture. There could also be a period of extreme upheaval with a change in ownership, business focus, or the target market.

The leadership coach must be flexible enough to take these changes in stride. Everyone on your team needs extra support and guidance during tough times, so you need a coach you can trust to help you weather the storm successfully.

Leadership Coaching for Results

When you choose the right leadership coach, you’ll get the most out of your emerging leaders, your strategic plan, and your opportunities for long-term success. Support your staff by providing leadership skills and resources they need to build skills, confidence, and experience. 

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Leadership Resources provides collaborative leadership coaching programs individualized to each company and participant. For genuine and lasting change, experts recommend leadership development programs as opposed to ordinary training programs. That’s why Leadership Resources works with business strategy consultants who help companies develop effective long-term leadership development plans

Do you already have an excellent leadership coach, or are you still searching for one? Reach out to Leadership Resources to be matched with a business strategy consultant who is the right fit for your business. We’re here to help you succeed!

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Rapid Business Growth: How to Adjust, Adapt, and Succeed

By Leadership Resources 06/06/2022
Business Growth

Is your company experiencing a period of rapid business growth? Congratulations! You’re seeing the kind of success every business seeks.

Rapid growth is a double-edged sword. On one hand, it brings abundant opportunities your company may have never experienced before. You’ll have the chance to bring in greater revenue, find new customers, develop more positive PR, and build a strong reputation in your field.

On the other hand, rapid growth threatens to topple your company under the weight of success. During this time of intense growth, your resources are stretched to the maximum, and your employees may start to feel the stress. It’s all too easy to lose your grip on the growth and let it go spiraling out of control.

Rapid Business Growth Challenges

Managing your business and employees during times of exponential organizational growth can be difficult. Issues such as employee burnout can rupture previously dynamic teams and departments. According to a Workforce Institute study, 95% of HR professionals link employee burnout to direct losses in workforce productivity. Additionally, sustaining your company’s culture and values can be hard to manage during times of rapid growth.

The best way to minimize the growing pains from rapid growth is to engage with a business strategy consultant who’s faced similar challenges before. Your strategic business partner helps you maintain a self growth mindset as you address obstacles along the way and overcome them on the path to success.

Adapting to Growth With a Business Strategy Consultant

When business growth is your goal or already your daily reality, it’s essential to acknowledge that it’s an overwhelming experience. There’s no need to “grin and bear it” or pretend that everything’s perfectly under control when it isn’t.

A business strategy consultant provides a welcome reality check and helps you develop a self growth mindset as your company’s expansion continues. Your consultant supports adaptability because they can help you perform a cost-benefit analysis of each path forward at crucial decision points for your business.

To get the most out of your growth, work with your business coach to develop a strategic plan that serves as a roadmap to the future. Create short and long-term growth plans month by month and year by year. Stay flexible enough to adapt over time, but keep your eye on the clear horizon you’ve created by having a strategic plan in place.

Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace

One of the secrets to managing growth wisely is supporting your employees as they emerge into leadership roles. This involves numerous leadership-related activities like pursuing leadership development programs, developing succession plans, and ensuring you have a positive and productive company culture. 

Because fast business growth can make people feel overwhelmed and disconnected from the company, initiate employee engagement strategies. Connect with your employees through surveys and one-on-one meetings to ask what the company can do to support them. Most importantly, follow through by providing programs that encourage them to further their personal and professional goals.

When interpersonal tensions arise, explore options for emotional intelligence (EQ) training. You might be surprised to learn that EQ isn’t an inborn trait but an acquired skill that can be increased and refined through leadership development programs.

High emotional intelligence helps people adapt to change and stay motivated when the going gets tough in business. If your company’s leaders exhibit high-EQ leadership styles, they’re more likely to have the skills it takes to share feedback tactfully, resolve conflicts quickly, and move teams forward with confidence.

Emotionally Intelligent Leaders White paper - Download

How to Embrace and Supercharge Your Growth

As your company grows, set growth-related goals to maintain the momentum. This is your best opportunity to ensure your growth remains manageable and profitable as time goes by.

Key tips for supercharging a company’s growth:

  • Keep the focus on positive morale and teamwork, even when times are tough.
  • Prioritize your highest-value activities to preserve resources.
  • Maintain top notch customer service.
  • Use systematic and thoughtful methods of strategic planning.
  • Take a proactive approach by hiring a business strategy consultant.

The importance of strategic planning can’t be overemphasized at this critical turning point for your company. During a time of rapid growth, urgent details can clog up your time and cloud your vision. A strategic plan clarifies your company’s path forward, even when growth is keeping everyone extremely busy. 

Leadership Resources for Fast Business Growth

Fast growth doesn’t last forever, so take advantage of it while you can. To embrace meaningful and lasting change, experts recommend innovative leadership development programs as opposed to traditional training programs. Leadership Resources provides a comprehensive leadership development approach with guidance and support for each participant on an individual level.

At Leadership Resources, we help you take advantage of rapid business growth. We provide help with leadership development, interpersonal skills, emotional intelligence, strategic planning, and many other aspects of successful businesses. 

This is the key to developing a self-growth mindset and nourishing the innovative employee engagement strategies it takes to succeed. Connect with Leadership Resources today to learn more.

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What to Look For in a Business Consultant for Leadership Coaching

By Leadership Resources 05/23/2022
Business Professional

Behind every superstar team is a superstar coach. That’s why you need more than just a run-of-the-mill business consulting firm. You need a leadership coach.

A leadership coach is a business strategy consultant who helps companies think and behave strategically in pursuit of their goals. As your company grows and changes, your leadership coach cheers you on while using their expertise to help you develop clear, actionable steps toward continued success.

This means that the best business consultants have certain qualities and skills to fully support evolving businesses. Below are some of the most important characteristics to seek out in a business consulting firm.

The Skill of Strategic Thinking for Developing Leaders

Thinking strategically doesn’t come naturally to everyone. It takes education, organization, and practice to develop the habits of strategic thinking and strategic planning.

When it comes to hiring a business consultant, make sure they have a strong background in business strategy consulting, not just business consulting. Basic consulting usually deals only with providing general advice or offering simple informational training programs. 

On the other hand, strategic consulting tackles the deeper, tougher problems that strain interpersonal connections and limit business growth potential. A talented business strategy consultant can help you dig down to the roots of persistent problems and resolve them. Plus, they can help you make a strategic roadmap to a successful future.

A Positive and Proactive Point of View

The right leadership coach has a positive outlook that comes from experience, patience, and wisdom. They’ve already helped many other companies find greater success through their proven approaches and processes, so they know they can help your company too.

Proactivity is an important trait in a business strategy consultant. When someone is proactive, they take the initiative to anticipate and address issues as they arise. In this way, your consultant helps you predict problems and resolve them before they become catastrophes.

Personal Accountability

A great business consultant helps foster an atmosphere of professional and personal accountability. This means holding people responsible for their behavior in a productive way that motivates them to seek positive outcomes.

In some companies, an ingrained culture of fear prevents people from staying accountable. There’s a tendency to pass the buck and say “Not me!” when problems arise. In this environment, it takes a skilled business coach to help identify and address accountability issues. 

Flexibility and Adaptability

This leads to two other qualities of a business coach that are especially important: flexibility and adaptability. Every business is unique and faces challenges specific to its culture, location, clientele, industry, and more.

The ideal business consulting firm is flexible and adaptable enough to adjust their process to your company for the perfect fit. When you come to them with a new challenge or conflict, they must be open to understanding the issue and seeking innovative solutions.

Interpersonal Communication Skills

Outstanding communication skills are vital for a business strategy consultant. When companies are growing and changing, interpersonal communication happens constantly at lightning speed. 

Your company needs a consultant who communicates clearly and quickly, keeping up with the pace of your needs. Before hiring a new consultant, ask how they plan to communicate with your team and ensure their communication channels and frequency will match your needs.

Wide Variety of Business Consulting Services and Leadership Development Programs

The right business strategy consultant should help reshape your business into a more efficient and productive place. With your leadership coach’s help, your organization should be able to more consistently accomplish its goals. 

Does your business consulting firm offer all of the following services?

  • Developing new business plans
  • Updating existing strategic plans to be more effective
  • Assisting with day-to-day decision-making
  • Surviving difficult transitions in business/leadership
  • Creating a healthier organizational culture
  • Seeking better profitability and financial stability
  • Implementing new programs for team-building and morale
  • Identifying future leaders and succession planning
  • Mapping out the future of the company

Leadership Development Potential

When your business is growing and expanding into new frontiers, your business consulting firm must be able to adapt to these changes and continue helping you succeed. One of the best ways to manage growth is to engage with a leadership development program.

Unlock The Leadership Potential Within Your Organization. Download this whitepaper.

Leadership Resources’ Accelerate Leadership Program (ALP) provides a way to address your company’s business initiatives reliably and consistently, day after day. This highly individualized approach uses one-on-one coaching, leadership training classes, assessments, accountability software, leadership tools, and person-to-person interactions to build leadership skills.

Each participant in the ALP program builds the essential skills it takes to motivate people and make progress toward company goals. With the help of a leadership coach, each member of the team experiences a strong and supportive program that supports the learning process.

Don’t just train your leaders. Develop them. Experts say it’s most effective to implement a robust leadership development program that involves developing leaders through coaching and support, not just training

Our Business Consulting Firm Helps You Succeed

There are plenty of business consultants who provide general advice that could apply to any business in the world. But your company deserves next-level leadership coaching and business planning from the business strategy consultants at Leadership Resources.

We specialize in providing customized strategies to address leadership development, strategic planning, and business coaching for the greatest possible success. Request a business consultation today to start getting the most out of your people and your company.

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Leadership Development Programs: 3 Steps to Take Before You Begin

By Leadership Resources 05/16/2022
Professionals working in a group

Starting a new leadership development program is an exciting time for an organization. Your team is on the cusp of discovering new leaders within your ranks, seizing new business opportunities, and planning for a successful future for many decades to come.

Why Preparing for Your Leadership Development Training Program is Important

It’s vital for your team to be well prepared in the right frame of mind when beginning a leadership development training program. According to the ICF’s Global Coaching Client Study, 86% of companies were able to calculate their ROI after implementing leadership development training. The return on investment for these companies ranged from 10 to 49 times, with the median being 700%. This means that your investment in a leadership training program was worth seven times what you spent on it. Investing in leadership development training is a great way to attract and retain the best talent and drive better performance.

Of course, it’s also a time of stress and apprehension for many of your employees. A new leadership training program can bring uncertainty about what’s ahead or even cause people to worry about losing their jobs.

Let’s look at three things your company can do to prepare for leadership team development and to get the most out of the process. Here’s how to set the stage for success.

Show Support at All Levels

An important first step is to demonstrate clear support for your new leadership coaching program from the very top of the organization. Through company communications and meetings, make it obvious that the program has the full backing of your company’s top dogs, including the CEO, C-suite executives, board members, directors, and all levels of managers.

This starts your leadership development program with a boost of positivity and shows everyone that ongoing education and skill-building are part of your organizational culture. When it’s time to launch the program, employees will feel more mentally prepared because their bosses have already shown so much support for it.

Help your employees picture the success of the company with their upcoming leadership training program in place. Encourage them to picture their individual role in the future of the company using their newfound knowledge and talent.

Stay Flexible and Keep an Open Mind

Many people view change with suspicion. Your entire company may have a longstanding habit of putting up resistance to change, particularly if previous leaders have instilled negative feelings like fear, anxiety, and defensiveness.

Before your new leadership development program begins, welcome your employees to open up about their anxieties and fears about the process. Reassure them that it’s part of human nature to be concerned about the future, but help them understand that change doesn’t have to be a negative experience.

Focus on positive outcomes like greater success, better morale, and less stress in the future. Encourage them to rely on their new leadership coach to help them address their worries about the process and its potential results.

Create a Definition of Success

As the old saying goes, “You can’t hit a target you can’t see.” It’s important to clarify your company’s target goals and establish exactly what you’re trying to accomplish.

What are your desired outcomes for this process? What does success look like? How will you know when you reach it? How will you acknowledge and praise your hardworking employees?

Common goals for leadership training programs include:

  • Developing or refining leadership soft skills
  • Creating efficient and effective teams
  • Expanding communication skills and improving collaboration
  • Enhancing emotional intelligence
  • Building a growth mindset
  • Inspiring and creating momentum for greater success

As the leadership development program begins, you can refine and clarify your end goals with the help of your leadership coach. This is an essential part of what’s known as “leadership coaching for results,” which involves a Success ChainTM of stacking wins on top of wins to achieve desired outcomes.

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The Next Step: Join the Accelerate Leadership Program

When your company is ready to initiate leadership team development, Leadership Resources is here to help. Our Accelerate Leadership Program (ALP) helps participants expand their leadership knowledge, talent, and confidence. 

Each participant in the ALP program builds the essential skills it takes to motivate people and make progress toward company goals. With the help of a leadership coach, each member of the team experiences an individualized program that supports the learning process.

Don’t just train them! Develop your leaders. Experts say it’s most effective to implement a robust leadership development program that involves coaching and support, not just training. 

Leadership Resources’ leadership development process goes far beyond basic leadership training courses. We incorporate a proven guided process, leadership coaching, customized coursework, peer connections, learning software, and more. ALP keeps everyone engaged as they work together to pursue success!

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How Self Care Can Improve Your Performance as a Leader

By Leadership Resources 05/10/2022
leadership development omaha

The hardworking leader is often portrayed as a sleep-deprived, stubborn, borderline manic individual obsessed with the bottom line and neglectful of their own self-care. While some people might fit this category, most do not. 

This stereotype can be harmful when it’s meant to lampoon leaders and mock anyone who struggles to achieve a healthy personal and professional lifestyle. Being a healthy high achiever doesn’t come naturally to everyone, and that’s okay.

In reality, the best leaders make time to take care of themselves physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially. Being able to balance the challenges of work with the importance of self-care is one of the most important leadership qualities. Failing to achieve this balance is a strategic leadership error that can bleed out into the rest of the business.

Ignoring the needs of one’s mind and body hurts one’s ability to think, focus, and help others in need. Conversely, engaging in self-care boosts the mind, body, and spirit, which also gives a boost to the others around you.

How strong is your self-care routine? Do you find yourself struggling to maintain a work-life balance? How are your coworkers and employees faring on this front? Here’s a deeper dive into how self-care can improve your performance as a leader and support a habit of good personal and professional health.

Proper Sleep: Alertness and Ability to React

Sleep science has come a long way in the past few decades and researchers have found a critical link between good sleep and improved work performance. The National Sleep Foundation reports that 29% of workers regularly feel sleepy while at work, which impacts their ability to function optimally. 

Missing out on a good night’s sleep can lead to a loss of focus and increased irritability. A Harvard study found that a consistent lack of sleep was associated with lower work productivity, poorer job performance, slower career progression, and a lower level of overall job and career satisfaction.

When work piles up and deadlines loom, people often put sleep on the back burner. This is a big mistake. The importance of proper sleep can’t be overstated, especially for leaders. 

Effective leadership depends on maximum alertness. By sacrificing precious hours of slumber, leaders are less equipped to react to challenges, prioritize tasks, and help other employees deal with their levels of stress. Conversely, getting proper sleep allows one’s mind to refresh, retain important information, and handle new problems as they arise.

Unlock The Leadership Potential Within Your Organization. Download this whitepaper.

The Healthy Body, Healthy Mind Connection

While improper sleep plagues a large chunk of the population, so does poor nutrition and exercise. As people rush from one place or task to the next, they forget to take time to nourish themselves with proper food, water, stretching, and other basic body needs.

To keep things moving in their busy professional lives, people may skip meals or grab the nearest, fastest option from the vending machine. The fast-food drive-through or microwave might become a substitute for fresh, nutrient-packed meals. While these choices may be convenient, they can do serious harm to one’s work performance and overall health.

Foods low in nutritional value don’t provide the vitamins and nutrients the brain and body need to thrive. Over time, poor choices negatively impact brain function and the results become obvious at work and in your interpersonal relationships. The National Institutes of Health call this the “food and mood” connection, which has long-term impacts for your physical and mental health.

While nutritional science is always evolving, most studies have shown that a diet of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean meat and fish, and minimal sugar is the most healthful approach. Drinking water is especially important, as is avoiding large amounts of alcohol.

Additionally, regular exercise has an array of positive effects. It improves metabolic function, burns calories, and also produces endorphins to increase alertness, reduce tension, and improve your mood. In this way, eating well and exercising are two of the best ways of managing leadership stress.

Setting an Example: Helping Others Find Self Care

Self-care does not equate to selfishness. Quite the opposite. By practicing self-care, leaders can do more for their employees because they do what it takes to maintain the personal capacity to nourish others. 

As a leader, you might wonder how you can support your team members in their journeys of self-care and personal productivity. At the most basic level, how can managers help their employees deal with stress? 

11 Ways To Create Accountability And Increase Productivity At Your Organization. Download this whitepaper.

First, they can share their own experiences of dealing with stress with employees. People appreciate having a caring boss who takes time to listen to their challenges. By advising on beneficial sleep patterns, diet, exercise, and other methods of stress reduction, leaders can set a great example in the workplace and create a culture of healthy performance.

Additionally, leaders who practice self-care regularly will have more energy to help their employees. With enough rest and restoration, leaders can prioritize their workload to set aside time for helping others, honing these crucial leadership skills

Leaders can also share resources that encourage positive routines, habits, thoughts, and behaviors. When they come across a book or program that helps them operate at peak performance, they can offer to connect a struggling employee or coworker to this same helpful resource.

Self-Care With the Accelerate Leadership Program

Do you need to update your professional self-care routine? Here’s a reliable resource with proven benefits for professionals and organizations. 

The Accelerate Leadership Program (ALP) encourages positive self-care as a person builds their leadership talent, confidence, and knowledge. This is a health-positive method of learning leadership habits because ALP allows each participant to hone their leadership style in a personalized and individualized program.

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ALP is different from many other types of leadership programs because it involves interpersonal coaching, not just training. Strategic leadership coaching programs go far beyond basic leadership training programs with a more caring and robust approach that incorporates leadership coaches, customized coursework, peer connections, and a highly interactive environment.

At Leadership Resources, our goal is to help people thrive and keep their personal and professional self-care at the heart of the learning process. We’re here to provide guidance and support that allows people to flourish in the workplace.

Leadership in times of growth, stress, and change truly tests one’s abilities. Self-care should remain at the forefront during these times, for the sake of the business, its leaders, its clients, and its employees who deserve the very best health and well-being.

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How to Get the Most Out of Your Business Consulting Sessions

By Leadership Resources 05/09/2022
Two women having discussion in front of computer

Do you have business consulting sessions coming up? Congratulations! You’re on the way to honing your company’s strategy and pursuing maximum success.

This is the perfect chance to leverage the experience of your leadership coach and squeeze every bit of benefit from your newfound leadership development experience. Read on to learn how to get the most out of your relationship with a business strategy consultant.

Why Leadership Development Consulting Is Important

Independent research from a wide variety of expert organizations regularly reveals a consistent conclusion: leadership development is one of the biggest issues facing organizations today. Via a survey from Deloitte, 80% of organizations say leadership is a top priority, but just half say their leaders are actually meeting expectations. For organizations, investing in leadership development helps boost the bottom line and attract good people. The right training can achieve the following:

  • Help a leader strategize effectively and manage change.
  • Attract and retain top talent
  • Improve overall financial performance
  • Ensure organizational consistency with succession planning
  • Increase probability of strategy execution

Conversely, ineffective leadership is the wrecking ball that a business can encounter. Not only does it result in disengagement, but it also leads to the loss of top talent. Not only that, but bad leadership can also hurt a company’s revenue. For these reasons, leadership development is one of the most important investments for an organization.

Create a Short-Term and Long-Term Plan

When it comes to building a business strategy, the best results arise from careful planning. Look at the next 3 to 12 months, then look even further into the next 1 to 5 years. What are your biggest goals? Your biggest challenges?

Talk to your leadership coach to discuss how your business will adapt to a changing marketplace. Create a plan for dealing with things like an unexpected competitor that enters your area or a sudden loss of a key leader in the company.

Be Clear and Specific About Your Goals

Clarity counts when it comes to working with a business consultant. There’s very little benefit to receiving general advice or being vague about what you want to accomplish in your sessions.

Many business consultants provide wide-ranging, generalized advice that could apply to any business. When it’s time for your coaching sessions, it’s perfectly acceptable to press your coach for more specific insights that will help your particular company.

Stay open-minded and be willing to put work into the process. Be prepared to ask questions, but also be ready to receive questions in return from your leadership development consultant to look deeper into your policies and processes. This should be a give-and-take in the name of achieving greater success.

Examine and Revise Existing Business Strategies

Work with your leadership coach to take a look at your company’s existing business plan, and give extra attention to gaps in the plan where your goals aren’t being met. What could you be doing differently to make more progress?

Sometimes, it’s necessary to scrap the existing plan and develop a new plan from the ground up. This is particularly true in businesses with dangerously unhealthy cultures or those that are experiencing massive shifts in ownership, focus, or target market.

Explore New Ways to Support Your Emerging Leaders

How well does your company identify and nourish its developing leaders? Now is the ideal time to get better at supporting positive leadership behaviors with the help of your business coach.

Full leadership support goes far beyond sending an employee to a training program. It involves providing leadership development opportunities, connecting them with their peers, nourishing their spirit, and cheering them on as they make progress. 

Download the whitepaper Identify and Develop High Potential Leaders of your Organization

It’s also important to help your newest leaders see a clear picture of the future where they play a vital role in your organization. Create a succession plan that includes leaders at various levels and map out a more profitable and productive future for your company.

Finding the Right Leadership Development Program

To get the most out of every business strategy consultant relationship, provide your emerging leaders with the leadership skills and resources they need to grow. Your company needs a leadership coach with the experience and expertise to provide robust guidance and support.

For meaningful, lasting change, experts recommend leadership development programs as opposed to simple training programs. At Leadership Resources, we help companies turn promising achievers into high-performing leaders with effective leadership development plans. Whenever you need us, we’re here to help you succeed.

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We're All in This Together: Creating Buy-In at Every Level

By Leadership Resources 05/06/2022
high five

A successful organization constantly rides the line between change and stasis. Growth cannot occur without new ideas, but radical shifts also threaten to collapse the entire structure, especially when there’s tension among team members. 

Change brings new interpersonal and leadership challenges. When a new policy is proposed or restructuring is in order, it’s imperative that leaders and staff members come to a sincere agreement and work together to enact such a change. 

This voluntary collaboration is known as “buy-in” because individuals must truly buy into and support an idea to help bring it to fruition. Simply put, more buy-in leads to more success.

How does one create buy-in?

In a perfect world, every member of an organization would agree on what’s best. This would eliminate the need to create buy-in because everyone would already be a willing proponent for change in their growing company

However, the real world relies on proper team management and strategic leadership, which involves taking several different perspectives into account and synthesizing them into an optimal solution. To create buy-in, then, leaders must effectively communicate with each individual team member.

What does this communication entail? First, it involves honesty and openness. Leaders must make it clear why they support change, based on the organization’s culture and values. Team members shouldn’t feel afraid to try new things and suggest changes because it feels that everyone is working together toward a shared goal.

By framing it this way, more skeptical team members can better see how this potential shift can benefit the company’s overall vision or mission. Leaders must stay open to feedback about the process, welcoming concerns and answering questions along the way. Any idea worth buying into should be easily defended against such criticism.

This communication might also require some give and take. You can’t expect every idea to strike the hearts and minds of everyone. There may be a period of negotiation that includes active listening, brainstorming, strategic thinking, and compromise. As long as this flow of communication is positive and fits within the company culture, these negotiations can result in the best possible outcome for everyone.

11 Ways To Create Accountability And Increase Productivity At Your Organization. Download this whitepaper.

creating buy-in at every level

The term “buy-in” often turns our minds to investments. In the stock market, buying in early will yield the highest profits, as long as the stock becomes more valuable over time. This principle also applies to buying into ideas in an organization. 

As a team manager, you want your team to buy into potential changes at every level. If the idea is valuable, this will benefit everyone. As a team participant, you also want others to have buy-in because it helps teamwork flow more smoothly as you move toward accomplishing the group’s and company’s goals.

The key here, of course, is to enhance the value of this change over time. This happens in a couple of ways. First, decisions made by a team tend to hold more value than decisions made by a single person. Consider the three types of decision-making: Command, consult, and consensus. 

There is a time and place for each of them, based on the decision that needs to be made and the amount of time you have to make the decision. Knowing which applies to each situation that arises is a skill of strategic leadership. Below, we’ll discuss each type of decision-making in more detail.

Command, Consult, and Consensus Decisions

A command decision is made solely by the decision-maker without input from the team. It A consult decision is made by the decision-maker but includes input from others. This takes a moderate amount of time within which there is some level of give-and-take, and this approach ultimately results in a moderate level of buy-in. 

A consensus decision is made entirely by the group. It has the highest level of buy-in, but it also takes the most time as the group pursues the full extent of the concept that “two heads are better than one.” Consensus decisions sometimes require a laborious process of building buy-in and working together as a team.

Among these three types of decision-making, consensus decisions hold the most value because they affect everyone involved. Each team member feels personally invested and has a stake in the success or failure of the idea.

Remember, while the real dollars-and-cents value of a decision matters, so does perceived value. When staff members buy into a change at every level, the perceived value of said change increases. Of course, an organization must be careful to not allow this perceived value to run away from the real value of an idea, as this can lead to disaster.

Company Structural Considerations for Building Buy-in

Buy-in isn’t something that happens magically. It takes a commitment to work together cohesively and allot the resources required to thoughtfully share feedback and develop action plans.

During any type of decision-making process, it’s vital to have a strong operating system in place to provide structure and direction for the plan to come together. This involves utilizing processes like strategic planning, succession planning, and retaining the top talent it takes to maintain consistency in leadership over the long term.

In general, the sooner team leaders can build buy-in for a particular change, the better. But first, leaders must approach their team with honesty, focus, a solid argument, and a willingness to listen. If they do this, they’ll more easily create buy-in at every level of the process.

The Accelerate Leadership Program

As you can see, buy-in is an essential part of running a successful company. Leadership Resources aims to enhance the leadership qualities of communication and teamwork in order to create more buy-in for your organization and set the stage for success.

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Any company looking to boost buy-in among its employees and leaders can do it through leadership development coaching. Companies looking to have meaningful, lasting guidance in support of developing leaders should invest in coaching and development programs as opposed to training programs.

Consider the Accelerate Leadership Program (ALP), which helps participants expand their leadership confidence and develop a talent for building buy-in. ALP uses a proven process that involves leadership coaching, peer interactions, educational software, and skill-building on topics like emotional intelligence, interpersonal interactions, and honing one’s personal leadership style.

At Leadership Resources, we help companies identify emerging leaders and nurture emotionally intelligent leadership that builds buy-in. When your company needs to implement an effective leadership development plan, we’re here to provide expert guidance and support.

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Habits of a Successful Leader

By Leadership Resources 05/05/2022
Group of leaders smiling

No two leaders are exactly alike, but the most successful leaders often have plenty in common. Personal preferences, opinions, and life experiences aside, certain leadership qualities ring true across the board.

Characteristics like honesty, responsiveness, passion, and integrity are almost universally valued in successful and growing companies. While these traits might be somewhat inherent in certain leaders, the best leaders become successful by honing specific skills through hard work and habit formation. 

What, exactly, are the habits of some of the world’s most effective leaders? Let’s outline the habits of a successful leader that most reliably allow people to acquire and maintain leadership success in their workplace and life.

Cultivating a Thirst for Knowledge

One of the most important qualities of an effective leader is the willingness and ability to continuously learn. Curiosity counts because it keeps people reaching out to educate themselves about new topics and innovative ideas arising in the world.

A successful leader gathers knowledge from a wide variety of sources. They read books across genres and fields of expertise, listen to people with diverse backgrounds and experiences, and ask questions of their peers, employees, friends, and even strangers. All of these activities allow leaders to expand their horizons. 

Even if a piece of information might not seem immediately relevant to a leader’s life or career, it could be immensely helpful later. This is why a successful leader often has an unexpected type of hobby or interest. The diversity of their learning leads to a diversity of hobbies and habits.

The culmination of these various bits of knowledge can be synthesized over time in new and unique ways. Creativity abounds when your brain is constantly in a state of stimulation. There is no downside, only upside, to receiving an ongoing education. Successful leaders know there’s always more to discover.

Maintaining a Balance of Confidence and Humility

There are always areas of growth for leaders, and the only way to identify and improve those areas is to put your ego aside, then pick it back up to act on those necessary changes. Leadership success comes with power and privileges, and this prestige can cloud the mind of individuals who lack humility. 

Conversely, leaders who lack confidence can struggle to get things done, create buy-in, and maintain positive forward momentum. The void in their interpersonal skill causes people to keep them at a distance, which makes team-building a struggle.

As such, the most successful leaders strike a careful balance between confidence and humility. They’ve developed a skill for listening closely to their peers and team members while not backing down from bold ideas.

Focusing on Physical, Mental, and Social Health

The aforementioned array of power and privilege inherent in leadership also brings its fair share of stress, which manifests both in the mind and body. Leaders who fail to take care of their mental and physical health can burn out, lash out, and/or simply become less effective overall. 

Social health is also important because it keeps people connected to their colleagues, friends, family members, and society. Ample research has shown that when someone is overly isolated, their socio-emotional health suffers and they’re at higher risk for conditions like diabetes and heart disease.

Overall leadership success largely depends on maintaining a healthy lifestyle both in and out of work. The best leaders focus on managing leadership stress by exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, eating healthfully, taking breaks, practicing mindfulness, and more. They may engage in relaxation techniques like meditation and yoga, which have positive effects on the heart, mind, and body.

Taking the time for self-care allows leaders to operate with a clear mind and high-functioning body. This is crucial for maintaining a Success ChainTM of positive habits like getting things done quickly and getting them done right.

Staying Organized Personally and Professionally

Effective leaders are also well-organized where it counts. While a messy desk might be a proverbial sign of genius, it’s not exactly ideal for strategic planning, scheduling, goal-tracking, and so on. 

Organization helps everything stay on track, especially when someone is in charge of managing people and teams. Keeping documents and items in their proper places, taking regular notes, journaling, and maintaining a detailed calendar helps keep things straight so leaders can spend less time and energy shuffling papers around and more on other matters.

When a leader has good organizational skills, this sets the stage for other high-level leadership tasks like team-based brainstorming, innovative idea generation, performance management, employee check-ins, executive meetings, and much more.

Positively Pushing Themselves and Others

Organizations can only grow if leaders and their teams are constantly coming up with new ideas and taking calculated risks. Indeed, this willingness to push the envelope is one of the key qualities of a good leader, and honing it depends on leaders pushing themselves out of their comfort zones in every area of their lives, including at work. 

When we refer to “pushing themselves and others” in this context, what we mean is positive pushing. Good leaders aren’t pushy, but they bring others along through positive motivation, inspiration, and a drive to achieve greater things in the future. They challenge others to accomplish things because they’re constantly challenging themselves to do so too.

Successful leaders are always challenging themselves, whether it’s running an extra quarter-mile than initially planned, trying a new type of cuisine, attending an unlikely event, making a new friend, or almost anything else. Living life “on the edge” in this way conditions leaders to be bolder in the workplace and mitigate the fear of the unknown so their organization and people can grow in unexpected ways.

Successful leaders are creatures of habit – but not just any habits. These are positive, proactive, and productive habits that help growing organizations. The habits of leadership involve pursuits like gaining new knowledge, becoming more self-aware, improving one’s mental and physical well-being, staying organized, and always staying open to trying new things.

Remember: Leadership Habits are Learned, Not Inborn

People often assume that leadership habits naturally arise from certain personalities and backgrounds, but that’s not the case. There is no “leadership gene” or inborn trait that automatically makes someone a good leader.

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Leadership is learned behavior that comes from building habits and practicing leadership skills. This includes actively practicing a wide variety of leadership-related habits such as:

  • Building strong paths of communication between oneself and others
  • Regularly putting organizational skills to work
  • Openness to joining and leading teams
  • A desire to grow and learn
  • Practicing flexibility and adaptability in thinking
  • Forging interpersonal connections
  • Strategic thinking whenever possible
  • Finding humor and creativity in daily life
  • Openness to receiving feedback from peers and supervisors
  • Willingness to be held accountable for one’s work

Almost every company has plenty of potential leaders who need a supportive culture that provides enough guidance to go to the next level. They’re ready to learn new leadership skills and habits, but aren’t sure how to pursue a path to leadership without their organization’s help. 

Do you have emerging leaders who could benefit from leadership development coaching and education? If so, take a look at the information below about a proven program that builds productive leadership habits.

The Accelerate Leadership Program

At Leadership Resources, our goal is to help companies thrive through proven techniques for developing positive leadership habits that lead to organizational success. The Accelerate Leadership Program (ALP) helps participants expand their leadership talent, confidence, and knowledge. 

This is an effective way to learn leadership habits because ALP allows each participant to hone their leadership style while learning the essential skills it takes to motivate and inspire people. It’s a personalized and individualized program that allows each person to build productive new habits in their own way.

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ALP is different from many other types of habit-building programs because it’s coaching, not just training. Leadership coaching programs go far beyond basic leadership training programs because they use a more robust approach that incorporates a proven process, customized coursework, peer connections, leadership coaches, interactive software, and an archive of helpful resources to help them stay engaged.

At Leadership Resources, we help companies identify emerging leaders and give them the habits they need to stay successful. We’re here to provide guidance and support when your company needs to build positive habits of leadership that will last for the long haul.

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