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The Most Important Leadership Training Topics Every Curriculum Needs

By John Wright on September 23, 2016

All leaders, regardless of their origins, agree that certain leadership skills must be learned thus all leaders can benefit from leadership training. However, not all leadership training programs will deliver the long-term results you desire. When choosing a program to train your leaders, make sure it includes the following vital skill sets.

1. How Best to Empower

A leader’s ability to empower will have a significant impact on driving business results. The best leader knows how to make staff shine, by delegating responsibilities according to each staff member’s strengths and weaknesses. An effective delegation model exists and can be taught. Other aspects of delegation can be taught during training as well, including how to:

  • Empower with clarity
  • Define span of freedom and responsibility in executing tasks for direct reports
  • Ensure staff take personal ownership for delivering on commitments

The key takeaway from this leadership training topic is that leaders will know how to best nudge their staff to get results.

Learn what it takes to implement a truly successful leadership training and  development program.

2. How to Lead Meetings

This may seem like a superficial skill to focus on, but leading effective and productive meetings is one of the most important skills a leader needs to have. Consider how many meetings are run daily in an organization - almost all meetings will be run by someone in a leadership role. You need to step back and consider how effectively organized those meetings are and look at the productive outcome. Training on how to lead meetings include skills building in:

  • Getting everyone involved and participating in the meeting topic
  • Managing meetings effectively, so each member is heard
  • Getting to the main meeting points quickly
  • Staying on time and on task
  • Focusing on core objectives and limiting distractions
  • Generating actionable results

3. The Best Ways to Manage People

Managing people is part of leadership, but it’s a part that may not come naturally to leaders. In almost every job, people skills are every bit as important as technical, or hard skills. Luckily, people management is another skill that can be taught. The first step is being open to training itself. The next is to practice what is learned. Through training, leaders learn to:

  • Manage and overcome interpersonal conflict
  • Help staff with their own goal setting, time management, and collaboration challenges
  • Encourage staff to diagnose their own performance
  • Garner a culture of accountability for their team

4. Soft Skill Building

While we spend large portions of our careers learning the hard skills required to completing tasks and doing our jobs, it is essential that leaders also have training in “soft skill” areas. When seeking leadership training, ensure the curriculum has components targeted specifically to personal and soft skills building for leaders. While technical skills are important, soft skills are crucial to career success as a leader. Soft skills building for leadership training should cover:

  • Building effective relationships
  • Communicating clearly
  • Listening actively
  • Thinking creatively

5. Training Specific to Situations Leaders Might Face

While you can’t know exactly what the future will bring, there is one thing you can train leaders to face: Change. Even seasoned leaders can benefit from training for change management. Even if you’re not undergoing a complete culture transformation, leading through change is still important even for smaller initiatives like changes to software and systems.  Training here will include:

  • Best ways to educate others about a change
  • How to choose whether to try a different change tactic
  • How to assess your own impact toward change
  • Methods for providing constructive feedback

Leadership training programs vary; make sure your leaders are receiving the best leadership skills training by looking at the training topics included within the curriculum.

Leadership Training and Development: A Guide to Success

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Since 1991, John has acquired extensive experience in the design and delivery of a diverse portfolio of programs. In addition to his executive responsibilities as President of Leadership and Learning Events, John is considered a valued partner to many executive teams. His insight and experience enable him to effectively diagnose, design, and implement complex culture change initiatives in a collaborative and engaging manner. Moreover, John’s experience in global implementations allows him to draw from a deep well of history to create unique and customized solutions. John’s passion for developing people makes him a sought after speaker, partner and coach and is evident in the high praise he receives from clients.

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Founded in 1988, Eagle's Flight has earned its reputation as a global leader in the development and delivery of business-relevant, experiential learning programs that achieve specific training objectives and lasting behavior changes.

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