A Leadership Development Program to Unlock the Whole Leader

group of happy employees to illustrate good leadership development

A Leadership Development Program to Unlock the Whole Leader

Did you know that people take action on 10% of what they read, 20% of what they hear, and 90% of what they actually do?

Old classroom models of leadership development are outdated. These rely heavily on traditional, intellectualized models of consulting where the consultant teaches a cohort of learners over the course of one or two days and then leaves—never to be seen again.

Faced with a stack of handouts after a day of listening to lectures, most of your employees will not retain much by next morning.

At Talent Suite, we’ve found that organizations build stronger, more productive workplaces and people when a facilitator takes learning “out of the classroom and into the boardroom” What we meant by this is we take a business approach to learning. We call this methodology “Learn-Use-Repeat.”

Why “Learn-Use-Repeat” Makes For Good Leadership Development

1)     We help employees and managers understand workplace behaviors first

Our preferred behavior assessment tool, Predictive Index (PI), provides data on how employees show up in the workplace. Based on a person’s behavior and communication style, we provide simple, actionable leadership concepts and on-the-job feedback to get results.

This approach helps employees understand themselves first, and helps management discover which employees have good leadership potential, and who may be ready to grow and take on more responsibility.

2)     We teach one or two concepts at a time

When training employees, we share one or two concepts at a time, then ask our clients to put the learning into practice before we layer on another concept. And we perform accountability check-ins to have employees share with one another how they have put what they learned into practice.

This back-and-forth action engages the brain in taking in new ideas in a practical, memorable way. Think “boardroom discussion/activity,” rather than passive learning in a classroom, which allows your team to retain more and learn faster.

3)     We emphasize going out and “doing”, to see what sticks

Real, sustainable learning comes from a client’s own insights as they take action on what they’ve heard. The time away from our training is when the most valuable “aha” moments tend to happen. Clients come back to each training session ready to share success stories and how they put our concepts into practice in the workplace. They also share what may not have worked so well for them, and we discuss other tactics that may work better.

Without this opportunity to put the learning into practice, leadership development remains too theoretical. It’s also unlikely to lead to optimal human development performance. That’s because learning the concepts on their own, without practical use, will lead to them being forgotten very soon after the training.

The Holistic Approach to Leadership – Because Every Leader is a Whole Individual

In addition to employing “Learn-Use-Repeat,” we aim to involve the whole person in leadership development. We focus not only on what and how they learn, but who they are as a whole individual.

We like to say the whole person comes to work each day, so we must work to understand the Head, Heart, and Briefcase of each employee:

The Head: This represents an employee’s “fixed” needs in the workplace. Predictive Index helps us understand what an employee “needs” to be most productive in working as part of a team.

The Heart: This covers what an individual has experienced, their work ethic, who they have worked for, their core values. These are fluid throughout someone’s lifetime.

The Briefcase: This focuses on both work and life experiences. This is what your employee brings to the table in terms of skills.

By understanding the whole person, we can customize coaching for each emerging leader, with a focus on common workplace pitfalls, including:

  • breaking unproductive thinking habits and bringing out professional influence in your employees, including important self-awareness
  • developing ways of having strategic conversations and engagement with others, including providing the skills to have those tough conversations, and
  • using the analytics we provide to strengthen relationships within your teams so you have fewer people problems.


This three-pronged approach builds a foundation of leadership, improves efficiency and effectiveness, and leads to innovation and creativity.

How a Good Leadership Development Program Helps Retain Your Talent

In today’s tough job market, employees expect to have training and growth opportunities.

In fact, a 2021 worldwide research study by Statista found that more than 75 percent of Gen Z workers expect learning and training to be constant throughout their careers. A far lower percentage of older workers said the same.

Another study specific to Millennials found that this group is happy to have portfolio careers and will leave a job where they’re not offered leadership development to improve their prospects. It’s more important to them than it was to previous generations.

Ultimately, a good leadership development program that unlocks the Whole Leader will repay your investment in retaining current and future hires many times over.

We’re Here for You

We know that your time is your most valuable commodity as an executive, so contact us today to discuss how we can help you design a customized leadership development program for your organization.

Image attribution