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Architecting a Comprehensive Leadership Development Framework
A Practical, Integrated Curriculum
According to ASTD’s 2005 State of the Industry Report, organizations based in the United States provide approximately 35 hours of formal training to the average employee each year. With approximately 17 percent of this time dedicated to leadership development, that equates to approximately six hours per year invested in executive, management or supervisory training. Even middle- and senior-level managers are unlikely to spend more than three to five days a year in formal leadership training.
With such a small amount of time available to cover so many topics, companies have begun to focus on fewer, more critical organizational competencies. Professionals in ASTD’s best-performing organizations actually provided their employees with the lowest number of courses per staff member. This most likely indicates an increased emphasis on mastering fewer competencies instead of covering a broader range of topics in less depth. Across the board, it appears that focusing on fewer, more strategic topics with greater reinforcement is affording organizations a greater probability of making a meaningful impact on enterprise performance.
When designing the curriculum for a leadership development system, there are three distinct content elements to address. Although the organization might define any or all of these three elements in significant detail, it is best left up to operating departments and managers to select a final personalized plan for individual employees:
Organizational Objectives: Every organization goes through dynamic shifts in its internal and external environments that require ever-evolving skill sets from its employees. In some cases, these shifts are dramatic and require an adjustment in the overall characteristics, values or talents of employees. Examples include the rapid transition from one market or business model to another. In such cases, a CEO will most likely seek to exchange key areas of its workforce for external resources to quickly add more relevant experience to the staff.
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