Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

Leadership Development Plans

“Leadership Development Plan” sounds like HR mumbo-jumbo… cue employees groaning and hoping that they have a conflict with the scheduled training. In reality, this type of employee development can be a miraculous “cure for what ails you” when it comes to workplace problems. Leadership development, in its most basic form, sets a series of goals for your organization that can be accomplished by empowering employees to take ownership in their work. Wish your volunteers had better phone skills? Zap! Leadership development plan. Wish your managers knew how to give constructive criticism? Shazam! Leadership development plan. Wish your employees brought you ice cream sundaes and rubbed your feet? … That’s a little gross. Can’t help you there.

As with any employee development, leadership development plans begin by setting goals with stakeholders. Right away, your plan will probably take one of two forms. In type A, you will be grooming a specific set of employees to take on a greater ownership role in your company. This sort of leadership plan might follow a restructure or change in workflow. Or, it might be part of your routine management training.

Your leadership development plan could also be type B. Type B would involve leadership training to a large group of non-management employees. This type of leadership development would be aimed at improving overall employee performance by encouraging leadership qualities. For example, a type B goal might be to teach employees to better deliver unfortunate news to clients. Achieving this goal requires that employees adopt leadership qualities in their day-to-day jobs.

The development of both types of leadership plans is very similar. It is important to begin by inviting stakeholders to your meetings about employee development. For type A, invite the group of individuals you want to train. For type B, invite select employees from the group that you want to train. Learn more about why this is important here. In short, doing so is both considerate and valuable.

The leadership plans themselves will include 3 main components: goals, activities, and timelines. These are the same components of any good employee development. The defining characteristic of a leadership development plan is the activity. The activity will involve teaching employees a new skill or perspective. Good activities involve active participation, flyers/handouts for employees to keep for reference, and interesting leaders. The best leadership training is to watch a great leader in action! The folks performing your training should be the kind of people you would want to hire, and they should empower your employees in fun and innovative ways.

Head over here for some great examples of leadership development activities, and get your plan started today!

How do you incorporate leadership into your employee development plan? Share your success stories and questions below!

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by Victor1558

Kristin Anderson

Kristin has a B.A. in English from the University of Iowa, with an emphasis in creative writing. In her free time she enjoys long walks, kitchen adventures, and making puns.