How to Support Leaders in Your Organization

This article comes from Entrepreneur.

How to Support Leaders in Your Organization

If leaders need time to become great, then it is the job of their organization to support them along their journey. Here’s how:

1. Communicate expectations

If expectations have never been communicated directly to your leaders, then you can almost bet there are a few in the crowd making some assumptions. These assumptions may be leading them to believe they need to be exceptional leaders from their very first day leading people or that they can never fail. While these are unrealistic expectations for any company to have of their leaders, these are very real thoughts leaders at all levels may have.

2. Create a culture of continuous learning

It is not uncommon to hear that the realities of business such as deadlines, crisis’, and shifting priorities, are impeding a leader’s ability to make their development a priority. With so much to do and so little time, learning and development can quickly turn into a “check the box activity.” In order to overcome this objection, creating a company culture of continuous learning will be important. In this culture, opportunities for improvement and one’s development through various learning activities are encouraged and seen as just as crucial to one’s success as their ability to complete a project. It is a culture where time spent learning now is seen as a positive future investment.

3. Invest in practical, relevant, experiential training

When it comes to leadership training, there are hundreds, if not thousands of options available at your fingertips. Though for those who want to see their leaders become great by equipping them with the competencies, skills, and tools they need to succeed on the job and “in the heat of battle,” it will not be enough for training to transfer knowledge via a video, lecturer, or online course. Rather, an investment should be made in leadership training that is experiential in nature, where leaders are engaged in their own learning through interactive and hands-on activities or discussions. Through these experiences, leaders learn by doing, which builds confidence to apply the learning back on the job immediately.

4. Set up a mentoring initiative and ensure access to coaching

Effective mentoring has been shown to result in higher organizational commitment, higher job satisfaction, and more positive feelings towards senior leadership and the company as a place to work – all of which are things you want from your leaders. In order to make this happen, you must ensure leaders have regular access to their mentors and can receive timely coaching. Those who do will be able to turn to their mentors in pivotal moments of learning to discuss their problem, examine solutions, and plan a course forward.

Take time today for tomorrow’s leaders

Leaders at all levels have immense potential within them to be great, no matter how greatness is defined by your organization. While their job is to meet your organization’s defined expectations of great leadership, it is your job to support and equip them along the way. Whether you choose to do so through your company culture, leadership training, mentorship programs, or a combination of all three, these actions directly support a more successful future for your leaders, your employees, and your company.

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