Late last week I was discussing the customisation of a leadership workshop with one of our clients, and they asked whether there is any link between leadership development and a change management processes. This article I came across in the Harvard Business Review written by Ryan W. Quinn and Robert E. Quinn clearly outlines the link between leadership development and managing change. Leadership development by its very nature is a change process and requires the support of all leaders across the organisation to bring about lasting effect – whether it be a top down or bottom up approach – or ideally both at the same time.
Lasting leadership development and change management programs need clarity around the desired outcomes (the direction), the leaders need to be empowered to bring about the desired outcomes, all staff need to have a mechanism to contribute their ideas and leaders at every level within the organisation need to role model the new behaviours.
Successful organisations are consistently improving what they do and managing change and developing their leaders becomes part of their operating rhythm. They already have clear goals in place, they empower their leaders to deliver the agreed outcomes, they have a mechanism where their employees have a voice and their leaders at every level are great role models. For most organisations this article offers a great example of a theory that should be embraced by all organisations that have a vision for a positive and adaptable culture.