Click here for your desktop coach.Leadership Paradox

Also check out: What is Leadership, Colin Powell on Leadership and leadership skill-building books.

Although the executive education debate still rages on whether leadership is learned or innate, there is no doubt that the subject is being taught.

In October 2003, BusinessWeek reported that 134 companies from 20 nations spent $210 million to enroll 21,000 employees in executive leadership programs. Since leadership development is not an event, that's a significant investment in classroom activities that may or may not produce company leaders or even better managers.

Stanford University is introducing leadership coaching into their MBA program and the University of Michigan Executive Education Program is offering a 3-day "Becoming an Exceptional Coach" for $4,350. Compare these classroom training programs with six-months of weekly personal executive coaching for less than $8,000 to create a positive leadership mindset.

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A survey of 3,000 leaders and associates in 117 organizations reports that 63% plan to increase spending on leadership development programs that 75% of HR executives surveyed don't give a high quality rating to.

The paradox of spending more on what's not working is due to leadership development being seen as a classroom event. Yet, you don't fix people by sending them off to training. Managers need ongoing coaching to get in the habit of being good leaders.

The survey reported that two-thirds of the respondents said leaders at their company exhibited at least one potentially fatal flaw or "derailer"--a personality attribute that interferes with leadership effectiveness. Derailers are more personality-oriented than skill-based and are more difficult to change than teaching someone a new skill.

For all the money spent on them, we still don't know if leadership programs work.

Bottom Line: Leadership development is self-development. Learning how to not micromanage, not be overly concrete, not fail to explicitly state expectations and other unproductive inter-personal behavior only happens through the increased self-awareness gained in a personal coaching or mentoring relationship.

“The crux of leadership development that works is self-directed learning: intentionally developing or strengthening an aspect of who you are or who you want to be, or both.” Primal Leadership by Daniel Goleman, Richard Boyatzis & Annie McKee (Harvard Business School Press)

Sources: Leadership Paradox by Warren Bennis in October 1, 2004, CIO/Insight and Assessment of the state of corporate leadership by Bridgeville, PA-based Development Dimensions International

Our Intention

Click to learn more about Coach John Agno. Coaching Tip

To provide mentoring tips in effective leadership. Leadership coach John Agno believes we must develop our leadership ability to achieve the success we seek. We can learn to pay more attention to our intentions. Getting to where we want to be happens by: gaining greater self-awareness, being on-purpose, building personal strengths and developing a sense of well-being.

What is Leadership?

Leadership is not just for people at the top. Everyone can learn to lead by discovering the power that lies within each one of us to make a difference and being prepared when the call to lead comes.

Leadership is applicable to all facets of life: a competency that you can learn to expand your perspective, set the context of a goal, understand the dynamics of human behavior and take the initiative to get to where you want to be.

Leadership development is self-development. Through discovering who you are and what you are meant to do, you develop the self-awareness and confidence required to lead.

Self-coaching helps us develop our leadership skills, clarify our values and guiding principles and build our reputation. Self-knowledge builds the personal integrity necessary to engage in productive relationships.


Don't Fake It

Click to coach yourself to success. In today's environment of changing technology and evolving complexity, we don't have to fake it. Yet, we must keep growing our abilities to grasp the success we seek.

Learning what we don't know helps us to understand why we do what we do. As we become more self-aware, we can consciously choose how we wish to improve our lives.

What is Success?

Only you know what's important in achieving your vision of success. However, we all seek shared outcomes to provide a foundation for where we want to be. Here is one client's definition of the foundation for his success:

"Have you ever watched, listened, and felt someone tuning a guitar or other string instrument? That is what it is like to have the good fortune of connecting with John Agno. He is a living tuning fork and you're that string instrument. Today, I have greater self awareness, am more in step with my calling, and better able to appreciate the journey, including the valleys, than ever before. Thanks, John for helping me get attuned with my LifeSignature."

You, too, can drastically increase your chances of succeeding in business and life when you learn from a coach or mentor – someone who once stood in your place and overcame all obstacles to earn success and happiness.

The common thread throughout history has been that you learn mastery performance from the master. Whatever quality or skill you want to develop, you "get it" by hanging out with people who have it.

Why coaching matters

Leadership coaching by certified executive & business coach.

Leadership development is not an event

Albert Einstein once said, "We should take care not to make the intellect our god; it has, of course, powerful muscles but no personality. It cannot lead; it can only serve."

Leaders know and science has discovered emotionality's deeper purpose: the timeworn mechanisms of emotion allow two human beings to receive the contents of each other's minds. Emotion is the messenger of love; it is the vehicle that carries every signal from one brimming heart to another.

Leadership happens in a series of interactive conversations that pull people toward becoming comfortable with the language of personal responsibility and commitment.

That is why leadership development is not an event. It is a process of participating in respectful conversations where the leader recognizes his or her own feelings and those of others in building safe and trusting relationships.

For human beings, feeling deeply is synonymous with being alive.

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