Leadership training is more than just helping your new management staff get acclimated. It’s also the best way to build a cohesive, capable team. Many companies recognize this, but implementation is where it can get tricky.

How does your company or team implement leadership training? Is it working? Is there room for improvement?

If you answered yes to at least one of those questions, then you’re ready to see the simple yet revolutionary future of leadership training: shadow leadership.

Leadership training: it’s a relationship

Leadership training is quickly evolving from standard lectures, seminars, and workshops into a more personalized learning experience. While the larger forums will continue to be a great place to disseminate information to a lot of people very quickly, the true training is going to take place between a mentor and their protégé. It will take weeks and months.

It’s within this more personalized setting that those who are wanting to learn leadership skills are going to learn the traits and skills they need to effectively lead. This type of setting will also let them have the opportunity to lead while having their mentor closely available if needed.

“Shadow leadership” is the future training method

The first time we heard the term “shadow leadership” was at a local leadership training seminar. While we aren’t sure who coined the term, it is a perfect analogy for how the future of leadership training should be modeled.

As a mentor with a new student, it’s like watching shadows at the beginning of the day. The mentor casts the shadow in the early light. Your student will largely stand behind you, in your shadow, observing, learning, & doing assigned tasks.

At midday, the shadows will be harder to tell. Both protégé and mentor will be taking on equal roles throughout the apprenticeship. The mentor is there as needed to shoulder the load, but the apprentice has come a great way.

At the end of the day, it’s the mentor who stands in the shadow cast by their student. The apprentice has become a master leader, only looking back for guidance on rare occasion.

Large scale implementation

While this style of training does require a one-on-one training and relationship, it can still be done on a larger scale. A single mentor can take on several students, depending on the time frame of the training. As your team progresses through the training, though, you’ll be amazed at how quickly and effectively the lessons are absorbed.

  • Your team will become stronger and more unified
  • Individual team members will become stronger and more capable leaders
  • Productivity and quality will soar

Watching this particular leadership training style in action has been amazing. It really generates results where other methods have failed to generate sufficient results.

Are you ready to lead your team to improved performance and unity? Add some team identity to your leadership group to get there faster. Be sure to check out all of the physical team identifiers in our store!

Photo Credit: Highways Agency