Leaders are Made, Not Born: How to Select a Leadership Training Program for Your Startup
As individuals and team members, we should always strive to learn and grow professionally and personally.
We are not born knowing it all. We learn with time.
We learn through coaching, mentoring and training.
And growth looks different for everyone. For some, it means getting a promotion; for others, training to develop new skills or stepping out of our comfort zone to explore and gain new knowledge.
Whether you’re a new team leader or an experienced manager, developing your team is an integral part of the job. In addition, in coaching and developing your team, you too evolve as a leader. Your ability to create high-performing teams is a skill that increases your impact and helps you breakthrough from the confinements of being an oversized individual contributor.
Past research suggests that leadership is 30% genetic and 70% a result of lessons learned through life experiences. While you may not have control over your genetics, you can still influence the remaining 70% with the right tools and a growth mindset.
Being the senior class president doesn’t make you a leader, neither does being the manager of a team.
The ability to effectively motivate, lead and direct a group of people requires a set of complex skills, mostly acquired through experiences, self-development and access to training.
To expect a person to be born with the ability to influence and direct others is ineffective and can incur needless costs to your organization.
As Carol Dweck writes in her book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, “we like to think of our champions and idols as superheroes who were born different from us. We don’t like to think of them as relatively ordinary people who made themselves extraordinary.”
To parallel Dweck’s sentiment, with access to leadership training and tools to transform, people in decision-making or managing roles at your organization will be able to reach their leadership potential and be your organization’s own superheroes who extend their abilities beyond themselves and onto their team as well
Leadership goes beyond managing numbers and tasks to coaching members of the team.
University of Illinois professor, David Rosch said, leadership development it’s a “three-legged stool:” ready, willing, and able.
“[Individuals] first become ready to learn about being a leader; then they become willing to learn the skills necessary to practice leadership; and finally they're able to lead because they have the skills and the motivation to do it." — David Rosch.
People need training and support throughout their careers to develop their skills and continue to work effectively.
Too often, individuals are thrusted into positions of leadership based on the merit of their work expertise and individual contributions. However, this approach does not always translate into the effective leadership of people. New leaders then find themselves disoriented and sometimes even wishing to go back to their previous roles.
This unfamiliar terrain without the proper knowledge and training can further impede not only on the individual leader’s empowerment but on the empowerment of the rest of the team.
And we are not talking only about new hires—we need to think individuals at the management level as well.
In previous blogs, we’ve covered how leadership training programs create opportunities for organizations to reach new heights and achieve the company’s goals.
If you work in a small or medium-sized organization, your startup's growth is limited by the strength of your leaders.
Now that you know that, you need to choose which kind of training program is best for your organization and its capacity.
Below are important factors to consider and 5 leadership training program options.
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Factors to consider when choosing the right program for your startup
When choosing a leadership training program, you want to ensure that it’s effective and provides the value you expect.
With varying company and team needs and resources pose different demands on what training will be right and accessible for you. Consider the factors below when choosing the right professional development program for your startup.
- Online, in-person and/or hybrid
- Academic vs Practical
- Specific vs Comprehensive
- Length (short, long and transformational)
- Synchronous or Asynchronous
- Resources and content post training
- Team training or individual
5 Leadership Training Program Options
Here are five leadership training program options startups can access in Ottawa.
1. Developing managers and leaders, LinkedIn Learning Solutions
LinkedIn Learning offers six different online training modules based on your employees’ needs.
According to their website, learners get personalized, data-driven course recommendations based on career field, job role, current skillset, self-selected interest.
The individual topics are: coaching and mentoring, leadership + management, collaboration, business planning, organizational culture, and professional development.
2. Professional Development Institute, University of Ottawa
The University of Ottawa offers leadership and management courses with an academic-approach through their Professional Development Institute.
They offer a variety of sessions with specific topics ranging from strategic thinking to effective delegation and more.
If you’re looking for a virtual learning option, the University just launched an online distance learning program where you can connect with a live virtual instructor during the workshop hours.
In person sessions will be held after March 2022, according to their website.
Hours, time, and price depend on the topic you choose. These range from three to four hours, one day to full weeks and $598–$1,000+.
3. Leadership Training, the Knowledge Academy
The Knowledge Academy training course is recommended for individuals of all levels wishing to improve their leadership skills, those interested in moving towards management roles, new managers, supervisors, team leaders, or even experienced managers looking to refresh their understanding.
According to their website, this leadership course will introduce you to the key elements of effective and successful leadership needed to develop your knowledge.
The duration breakdown of the course is one day with an online instructor-led, one day in a classroom, and eight hours of online self-paced learning.
It includes the Knowledge Academy Leadership Skills courseware folder, certificates, experienced instructors, and refreshments.
4. Team Development & Leadership Training in Ottawa & Surrounding Areas, Clariti Group inc.
Clariti Group offers a variety of methods to equip your leaders and their teams.
They offer individual leadership coaching, individual assessments, one-on-one sessions and group workshops, and habit builders or employee “check in” strategy.
Their five-month program it's broken down into five session: self-awareness, new competencies, new capacities, leadership impact and clear results.
The sessions are offered in-person, via video or phone and range in time, some run for 20-minutes others are four half-day trainings held once every four weeks.
5. Unicorn Leadership Development Program, Unicorn Labs
Unicorn Labs’ training program is designed for managers in high growth startups.
The 12-week leadership development program suits both new and experienced managers given the comprehensive content that provides concepts and tangible tools based on the latest research that will be relevant to every leader.
The format is iterative and builds on concepts resulting in an integrated system helping ground one’s leadership practice.
Unicorn Labs covers a vast array of managerial content from emotional intelligence, to team dynamics, and how to implement more practical topics on hiring and delegating. You’ll also find abstract concepts broken down to tactical practices that will inform and strengthen your leadership toolbox ready to be tapped for any situation.
As a primary online-based training, managers will be entered into the program as a cohort. With the asynchronous format, they can work at their own pace and will have lifetime access to the course and alumni community of managers.
The coaching and mentorship for leadership development training consists of videos, assessments, worksheets, live group coaching calls, and a community exclusively for program participants.
Finally, they'll retake the assessments to quantify their growth.
The live group coaching calls help contextualize unique managerial questions and challenges while providing coaching and mentoring for leadership development to help bridge the learning-to-doing gap.
Additionally, a lifetime access to the program which becomes a long-lasting resource to revisit again and again based on your current unique leadership journey.