In MHO, when it comes to leadership development, the Center for Creative Leadership is second to none. I’ve sung CCL’s praises before – I love their research-based approach, resources, programs, and products.
I really do enjoy keeping up with what’s going on in the field. Innovation is important in any profession, and leadership development is no exception. Please, spare me the fads, but by all means, let’s stay open to emerging best practices and promising looking trends.
Big idea #1: The merging fields of leadership and neuroscience.
CCL is studying research from the fields of brain science, positive psychology, mindfulness, meditation, and others to make interesting and relevant connections between improving how brain functions in order to improve our ability to lead.
So what are the practical implications for leaders today? You can start with getting a better night’s sleep, taking a walk, meditating, and breathing slowing and deeply when faced with stress. In the future, technology may play a role, by giving us sensors that will tip us off to when we need slow down and chose a response to stress, rather than just letting the prefrontal cortex of your brain take over and make you act like an idiot.
Big idea #2: Make leadership development more accessible and affordable.
CCL is challenging that paradigm. They are pursuing the goal of making leadership development more affordable and accessible in the world with some remarkable results. Why not? Today, more than ever, today’s Gen Y employees want to work for companies that are not only about making a profit – they want to contribute to the greater social good and make the world a better place.
Companies, governments, and individuals make all kinds of contributions in the form of money, food, and other services. Why not donate – and invest – in helping aspiring leaders realize their full potential? Wouldn’t we all benefit in the long run?
Big idea #3: The power of networks.
Networks and networking are hot, hot, hot. The last few conferences I’ve attended all had speakers talking about the power of networks and network analysis. They offer all kinds of new ways to measure who has the strongest networks and consulting services to help companies leverage their networks.
Network analysis may change the way we assess leadership potential, lead change, recruit and retain, innovate, and how we collaborate to achieve results.
Big idea #4: Nonprofit leadership development.
Research indicates that 3 out of 4 nonprofit executive leaders will retire in the next six years, leaving a significant leadership deficit. A majority of board leaders are also expected to retire in the near future.
The nonprofit sector includes human services, hospitals, education, arts, environment and civic engagement. Also under the nonprofit umbrella are entities such as testamentary trusts, fraternal groups, recreational leagues, trade associations and foundations.
American Express and CCL have a model that’s working. The American Express Leadership Academy has helped more than 300 emerging leaders in not-for-profit organizations build the skills needed to run a successful organization through a weeklong program, funded by American Express.
Big idea #5: Measure the impact of coaching.
Coaching is a $2 billion dollar business and growing. Yes, due to a lack of metrics, limited research to quantify impact, and inconsistent coaching standards, it’s difficult for businesses to evaluate the results of executive coaching. They tend to rely on a leap of faith that it’s working, and depend on word of mouth referrals when selecting a coach.
CCL’s answer to this challenge is a new product designed to measure coaching effectiveness, the Coaching Evaluation Assessment, or CEA.