Elevating Leadership Development: Best Practices For A Successful Emerging Leaders Program

What are the best practices for a successful Emerging Leaders Program? More importantly, what is the greatest factor that determines the success of an Emerging Leaders Program? Is it:
✅ Great content?
✅ Willing participants ready to learn?
✅ Practical application?
✅ Adaptable to multiple experience levels?
✅ Assessment of current skills using a leadership development tool?

The Most Important Success Factor Of An Emerging Leaders Program

All of these things are important, and set the foundation for a great learning experience. But the most important?

✅ Integration and involvement of senior management in the learning process

The most successful Emerging Leaders Programs have great involvement with the senior management of the business. What exactly does that mean? In developing the content of the program, discussion between Developing Leaders and management is crucial to get a clear understanding of the:

  • Vision and purpose of the business
  • What expectations will be placed upon the leaders in the program,
  • What development aspects have they already noticed in the participants (including shortfalls)
  • What environment (location, team, emotional level) are the leaders expected to lead in?

Importantly, we discuss what time and availability the management team can provide to the ongoing development of the Emerging Leaders Programs participants. Senior managers are busy people and can’t attend all of the sessions of the program (I will leave for a separate post the benefits of senior managers attending Emerging Leaders Programs with their participants), so it is important this style of Leadership Development Program is designed to integrate their involvement.

A successful Emerging Leaders Program integrates senior management involvement through great Leadership Development Developing Leaders – Integrating Senior Management Involvement

At Developing Leaders, we do that by:

  • Sharing summarised content of sessions with management,
  • Explaining to management to similarities / differences to leadership content they have learnt before,
  • Short ‘explainer’ videos sent to Managers for key content and new ideas,
  • A set of questions they can ask their participants before and after sessions to enhance the knowledge / discussion of both parties, and
  • Between session ‘homework’ activities that ensure connection with management, whether it be reflection, reading, teaching or discussion on topics within the Program.

At Developing Leaders we firmly believe (and stealing from an old African proverb) that it ‘takes a village to raise a leader’. Integration and involvement with senior leaders in the learning and leadership development process is a crucial part of any successful Emerging Leaders Program, and ensures that the learning moves well beyond the classroom.
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Looking To Develop Your Emerging Leaders?

Could your business benefit from a well-designed and integrated Emerging Leaders Program? Talk to the team that understands how to get the best out of emerging talent, and build the knowledge, skills and behaviours that fit with your business as well as grow with your senior leadership team.


Why Leaders Shouldn’t Just ‘Treat Others How They Want to Be Treated’

Should leaders treat others how they would like to be treated themselves? In the realm of leadership, there are plenty of leadership quotes and adages designed to provide guidance on how you should – and shouldn’t lead others. One of those adages is the belief that you should “treat others how you would like to be treated.” This adage, often referred to as ‘the Golden Rule’, suggests that leaders should interact with their team members based on their own preferences and values.

Honestly, to assume that all people want to be treated like we are treated is both naive and lazy thinking, and naïve and lazy leadership. The only guarantee you get with this idea is that your leadership works for you. In other words, a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach fall short of effective leadership.

Great Leaders ‘Treat Others How THEY Want To be Treated’

Instead, leaders should prioritize listening, asking questions, and understanding the individual nature of their team members. To fulfil upon the needs of team members for modern times, perhaps the adage should become ‘treat your staff how THEY would like to be treated’.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should individualise every decision and every thought process in your business to cater to every possible need. But it does mean that you should look beyond your own preferences to create a positive company culture.

What are benefits to treating staff how they would like to be treated?

  • Acknowledging Diversity: One of the fundamental reasons leaders should move beyond the Golden Rule is the recognition of diversity in the workplace. People come from different backgrounds, cultures, and experiences, and what may be considered respectful or motivating to one person might not resonate with another. We all come with a wealth of experience, beliefs, motives, desires and ambitions – each unique to the individual. By listening and asking questions, leaders can gain insights into the unique perspectives and needs of their team members, creating an inclusive environment where everyone feels valued.
  • Tailored Communication: Effective communication is at the heart of leadership. While treating others as you want to be treated assumes that everyone prefers the same communication style, it often neglects the reality that individuals have different communication preferences. Some may prefer direct and concise interactions, while others might appreciate more detailed explanations or regular check-ins. Leaders who ask questions and learn about their team members can adapt their communication to match individual needs, ensuring that messages are well-received and understood. Yes, that does mean that you may have to brief your team in more than one way and more than one occasion! What is better? Communicating more than once (and more than one way) and having your words ‘stick’, or do it once and have it go over people’s heads?
  • Motivation and Recognition: People are motivated by different factors and respond to recognition in different ways. While some people thrive on public praise and acknowledgment, others may prefer private recognition or even constructive criticism. By taking the time to understand each team member’s motivational triggers and preferred methods of recognition, leaders can create a more motivating and empowering work environment. ow do you do this How do you do this in the real world? By simply asking questions. Do you prefer praise in public or private? A celebration or a pat on the back? It doesn’t need to be complicated – the effort and the small tailoring you make because of it makes the difference.
  • Building Trust and Rapport: Trust is the foundation of any strong team. Leaders who actively engage with their team members, ask questions, and demonstrate a genuine interest in their well-being can build stronger trust and rapport, and do it more quickly than a blanket approach to communication. When team members feel heard and understood, they are more likely to trust their leaders, collaborate effectively, and remain committed to your – and your businesses – goals.
  • The Opportunity to Learn and Grow: While ‘the Golden Rule’ offers a simple approach to communication and leadership, ‘treat others how you want to be treated’ falls short in today’s diverse work environment. Effective leaders recognize the importance of listening, asking questions, and understanding the individual nature of their team members. They also benefit from having other views shared and crucially, have the opportunity to CHANGE their views based on new information.

So, leaders, remember: It’s not just about treating others as you would like to be treated; it’s about treating others as THEY want to be treated. One word – and thought – from you can make all of the difference.

Looking to Transform Your Leaders and Treat others How They Want To Be Treated?

Developing Leaders offers a range of Executive Leadership Coaching, Leadership programs and Leadership and Team workshops that can provide you with the practical communication skills to treat others how THEY want to be treated.


What Is The Most Important Role Of A Leader?

What is the most important role of a leader? Preventing drift and staying on track. Preventing drift in our own personal leadership behaviour and ensuring that we don’t go ‘off track’, preventing our teams from drifting off our target and goals, preventing financial drift – so much of a leaders and managers role is about preventing drift! Leaders and teams that drift do not meet expectations, and are often inefficient and ineffective in what they do. A team can drift off task easily – particularly in times of stress and if the team leaders struggles with difficult conversations.

What is Leadership Drift?

Drift is when you set a path, course, vision or purpose – and you start to move away (consciously or unconsciously) from what was planned or agreed. Drift manifests itself in a number of ways:

  • Not being clear in the direction you, the team and the business are heading,
  • Not getting ‘everyone on board’ and agreeing on the behaviours required to stay on track,
  • Not being clear on the behaviours you want (and cheering them on!) and the behaviours you don’t (and correcting them quickly),
  • Not walking the talk on your own behaviours and holding yourself to account (or letting others hold you to account)
  • Avoiding small and awkward conversations on standards, goals and behaviours until they become large, difficult conversations (when you have ‘drifted’ well off track), and
  • Not clearly communicating milestones, wins and near misses in performance.

To prevent drift, you first have to have a clear understanding of your goals, your targets and the behaviours that you need to achieve them. You also need to have a willingness to interact and engage with your team daily, encouraging and praising good work (yes, even if it is ‘their job’) to stay on track, and coaching and correcting when you drift.

Without discussion and correction, or team behaviours can drift off target
A leaders most important role is the prevention of team and task drift

Are You Drifting As A Leader?

Ask yourself a difficult question or two:

  • Where has your performance drifted? What will you do to correct it?
  • Where has your teams performance drifted? What has been your place in letting it happen? What little correction can you make today?
  • Where has your business drifted? At the start of the new FY, what course can you set to correct it?

If drift is an issue for you, your team or your business, you know who to call.
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The First Step To Correct DRIFT For A Leader- Know Where You Are Now

Are you drifting as a leader? Are you or your team ‘off track’? If you are unsure whether you are drifting or not, you should complete the Velocity Leadership CheckPoint.

Velocity Leadership CheckPoint - Leadership Assessment Tool for Leaders
Want to Prevent Leadership Drift? – The Velocity Leadership CheckPoint Is The Start Point

 25 behavioural leadership traits, focussed in 5 distinct leadership capabilities – a ‘must know’ for any leader or team looking to drive high performance and stay on track for the long term. If you haven’t completed the CheckPoint, get in touch with us today to arrange an appointment. Read through the comments and feedback from those that have – many say that it has had a profound effect on how they lead and perform within a team.


Are You Balanced Or Biased In Your Responsibility and Accountability?

Is your leadership balanced or biased when it comes to responsibility and accountability? When it comes to leading others, leading teams and leading high-performing teams, there is always a balance between getting your own work completed as well as that of your team. Often we can get caught doing all of our own work, and not paying attention to the work of our team. Likewise, we can easily be focussed on the team’s work and needs, and leave our own work to the last minute. Knowing whether you are balanced in your responsibility / accountability or biased – one way or the other – can have a huge impact on how you are perceived as a leader.

Responsibility and Accountability are two key leadership behavioural traits that are measured within IMLD’s Velocity Leadership CheckPoint.

So What Is Better – More Accountable Or More Responsible?

So that we are clear, let me explain the difference between responsibility and accountability.


Your responsibility focuses on your ability to hold yourself ‘to account’. It is ensuring that you keep the promises that you make to others as well as yourself.

Responsibility is a cornerstone of good leaders. A responsible leader accepts and owns the fact that they have a duty to deal with something or have control over someone (or a team). A responsible leader accepts the ability to respond – ‘response – ability’ – and demonstrates the ability to hold themselves to account for their behaviour.

Your Responsibility Score is one of 5 key behaviour traits within the Achieve leadership capability.


Your accountability focusses on your ability to hold others ‘to account’ It is ensuring that they keep the promises that they made to you and to others.

Leaders that demonstrate accountability are willing and able to hold someone to task for their behaviours and their actions. Lack of team accountability results in objectives and tasks being delayed, trust in team members eroding and the standing of your team diminished. A leader that holds the team to account achieves more and is more likely to be respected.

Your Accountability Score is one of 5 key behaviour traits within the Altitude leadership capability.

Ideal Settings

Ideally as a leader, you are aiming to be as responsible and accountable as you can be. The aim is to ensure that both you and your team are completely dependable – you deliver what you say you would, at the standard you said it would be completed, at the time you said it would be done by. In the perfect world, this would be done all of the time. But we don’t live in a perfect world! Factors outside our control can have an impact on both responsibility and accountability. Equally, factors within our control can have an impact as well.

A leader who suffers from procrastination is likely to be less responsible – putting off tasks that should have been completed at a specific time. In this manner, they break promises that they may have made to themselves, or promises that they made to others.

A leader who struggles with the ‘uncomfortableness’ of difficult conversations is likely to be less accountable – they will let people ‘off the hook’ rather than having an uncomfortable conversation about getting a task completed.

Many leaders don’t have being responsible and being accountable in balance, and it can have impacts both on themselves as well as their teams.

Impact of Being More Responsible Than Accountable

Being more responsible than accountable can have detrimental impacts on both the leader and their team. Many new leaders have the trait of being more responsible than accountable – they are used to doing work for themselves and are unaccustomed to empowering or delegating to team members. This can become a chronic behaviour if the leader is incredibly task or goal focussed, and enjoy completing things for themselves (or struggle to let go of things). With poor communication, this type of behaviour can also be seen as micro-managing.

When the responsibility skills are more developed than accountability skills, the leader can think things like ‘it is just easier if I do this myself’ rather than teaching or guiding others. Over time, the leader can start to get resentful for the additional work and tasks that they have taken on (but rarely see that this is in part causes by their own behaviour). At the same time, the team can lose interest in helping the leader and get bored, as well as feel micromanaged on the tasks that they have been given (which are often menial because the leader is completing the more difficult tasks). Overall, a leader who is far more responsible than accountable can get work completed themselves (and feel overworked), and create an unhappy work environment.

Impact of Being More Accountable Than Responsible

Being more accountable than responsible can also have detrimental effects on the leader and the team. A leader with these traits holds their team to a greater level of account than they hold themselves which, over time, the team will become resentful of. No team member wants to feel that they are being taken advantage of – particularly when it is obvious that the team is working harder than the leader.

Examples include:

  • the team turning up to a meeting on team but the leader arriving late,
  • the team completing their components of a report and having to wait for the leader to complete theirs,
  • the team cleaning up the kitchen but the leader expecting others to do it for them.

Importantly, the leader does not need to do the same things as the team – there are many times when the leader needs to focus on tasks / actions that only they can do while the team focusses on other things. This is about work rate and effort – and the team noticing that they are consistently working harder than the leader. In this setting, the team can quickly become resentful of working harder than the leader. At the same time, the leader can lose credibility and trust by expecting the team to put in more effort than they are. Overall, a leader who is far more accountable than responsible will create a poor work environment and most likely lose team members in the process.

Low Responsibility and Low Accountability

Having both low responsibility and low accountability will most likely result in a leader not staying a leader for very long. They set low standards for themselves and for the team, and routinely miss deadlines and targets for both. While I am sure we have all experienced leaders that have low traits in both responsibility and accountability – very few of us would regard them as good leaders.

Related Articles on Leadership, Responsibility & Accountability:

The Top 25 Behaviours That Define Great Leaders

The 5 Leadership Behaviours That Drive Great Cultures

Want to Know if You Are More Responsible Than Accountable?

The Velocity Leadership CheckPoint measures 25 leadership behavioural traits, including Responsibility and Accountability. Knowing how you currently behave as a leader is the first step to making a positive difference in leading yourself and your team.

If you would like to know your scores and what you can do to influence them, get in touch with us today.



What Does An Executive Leadership Coach Do?

What does an Executive Leadership Coach do? How does an Executive Leadership Coach develop leadership strengths and skills in CEO’s, General Managers and small / family business owners? By:

Supporting and Guiding (rather than leading) the Way,

An effective leadership coach brings a myriad of skills and behaviours to assist leaders, including coaching, mentoring and training. The truly successful leadership coaches know that they are not the hero of the story – you are. Theya re there to guide, develop and nurture your leadership skills so you become the leader that others want to follow.

Building Skills and Leadership Strengths,

Leadership coaching is more than just building on areas of weakness, it is also about harnessing and fully utilising your innate strengths. A great coach uses these strengths to overcome weaknesses or adapt to a better way of working. t Developing Leaders, we use the Velocity Leadership Checkpoint to provide clarity on strengths and development areas, and work with clients to develop their own coaching outcomes.

Provides Direction and Clarity,

An executive coach will not only advise and motivate you, but they’ll also keep you moving toward your goals. When getting to know you and your staff, they’ll learn more about what motivates and drives you so they can keep you accountable to your goals and your team. They can give you a helping hand when you need it or a push in the right direction if necessary.

Actively Listens and Questions,

A professional who offers executive leadership coaching can listen without judgment and offer qualified and private counsel to help you overcome your doubts.

To effectively guide their clients, a coach must first get to know them and their work style. A good coach will ask questions before offering guidance so they can learn more about your current stressors, thoughts on work, and future goals. They may ask you what makes you happy in your career, what motivates and inspires you, and what frustrates you about your current position. Only then can they help you navigate forward on a successful path. They’ll offer personalized guidance to help you become the best leader you can be and provide you with the practical tools needed to work through forthcoming rough patches.

Builds Confidence,

No matter where you are on the corporate ladder, it’s only natural to have anxieties and fears. But as a leader, you may feel incapable of sharing your worries or doubts without being judged by your peers or crossing boundaries with your subordinates. A leadership coach is an ideal person to work through those fears with, and develop skills, habits and behaviours that build your confidence in your role.

Safely Explores Other Options,

What are the other options that I have? Is my view / idea the right one? Leadership coaches can help share alternative views and ideas from which you can determine what is the best course of action for you, your team and your business. It is easy to become myopic and only see things from one perspective – a leadership coach can help you see things from different angles to determine a best course of action.

Holds to Account, and

When you are the CEO or owner of a small business, you are the boss. Who holds you to account? Leadership coaches can assist leaders by not only only holding to account, but assist in determining the most important priorities and holding you to them. Some people work best when they are being driven to a deadline, others like to be cheered on to success. A successful leadership coach works out what you need for optimal performance and provides it for you.

Encourages and Cheers You On.

When you’re working to achieve a goal, it can be all too easy to overlook the small wins on the path. A coach will cheer on your successes, both big and small. They may encourage you to take a step back to appreciate your journey, recognize the labor it took you and your team to get there and celebrate your successes. Acknowledging your wins can help you become more appreciative and grateful for your team and hard work. It can also help to motivate you and provide a framework for reaching your larger goals. An executive coach is there to help you understand what steps got you where you are now and how they can be replicated in the future. They’ll also encourage you to keep up your great work and continue down the path toward success.

Executive Leadership Coach

Executive Leadership Coach

If you need support (rather than judgement) in building your leadership skills for the benefit of you, your team and your business, why not engage a Executive Leadership Coach?

Clients that rated themselves as a 4 or 5 out of 10 for confidence, communication and leadership skills regularly rate as 8 or 9 out of 10 after working with one of our team. Those same people highlighted reduced stress, better time management and seeing things from a different perspective as huge benefits to the leadership coaching process.

What difference would moving your leadership skill from a 5 to an 8 make for your team and business?

#leadershipcoaching #leadershipcoach #executivecoaching #executiveleadershipcoach #developingleaders