In today’s inter-connected world, fully 85% of all employees are working in teams, cross-boundary relationships, or strategic alliances.
Thus, for organizations seeking competitive advantage, Collaborative Leadership Excellence is an essential configuration.
For the most part, other forms of leadership, when applied to complexity, change, engagement, and connectedness, are misguided, dysfunctional, or obsolete.
Specifically: Adversarial, Authoritarian, Transactional, and Hierarchical Leadership approaches are simply outmoded or not effective in much of today’s world, because these neither take advantage of the power of teamwork to produce quality results and nor engage collaborative innovation necessary for rapid adaptation. And worse: all-too-often these forms of leadership get muddled together, creating a mish-mash that produces sub-optimal results.
For all-too-many leaders, the constructs of Collaborative leadership are ill-defined, ambiguous, and thus muddled.
Our aim is to clearly define and implement Collaborative Leadership producing a quantum jump in productivity and employee engagement.
Collaborative Leaders seek to:
- Unite, Not Smite
- Guide, Not Divide
- Inspire, Not Open Fire
- Elevate, Not Denigrate
- Embrace, Not Disgrace
- Enlighten, Not Frighten
- Enthuse, Not Confuse
- Engage, Not Enrage
- Align, Not Malign
- Integrate, Not Segregate
- Lift, Not Rift
- Trust, Not Disgust
- Learn, Not Spurn
- Innovate, Not Desecrate
- Empower, Not Overpower
- Create, Not Hate
- Explore, Not Deplore
- Resolve, Not Devolve
- Demonstrate, Not Castigate
- Understand, Not Reprimand
- Reclaim, Not Blame
- Use Differences as Engines of Innovation, Not Destruction
The Institute operates at the intersection of Leadership Development, Organization Development, and Transformation in a complex, interconnected world where technology platforms bring us closer to each other on a global basis, yet takes us further away in the human interaction dimension.
As technology replaces face-to-face encounters, collaboration, trust, and shared interactive vision begin to weaken and eventually stop.
We address this problem and go much farther.
Think of this as the “high tech, high trust intersection,” which is The Institute’s sweet spot.
This is called Socio-Technical Systems.
We have created a leading edge capability in this field.
The emphasize the linkage between Trust, Time, and Teamwork to produce continuous streams of improvements and innovations.
We aim at producing leaders and managers -- young and mature -- that produce extraordinary results:
Top of Mind for Senior Leaders:
Senior organizational leaders are facing intense competition.
The Conference Board surveyed thousands of global leaders to determine what was most important for their internal organizations. Here's what they found:
- Attract & Retain Top Talent
- Generate Innovation
- Cultivate Future Leaders
- Create Competitive Advantage
The harsh reality is that only a small percentage of senior execs have been successful at achieving these objectives.
The reason is that the ideas and systems architectures of Collaborative Leadership Excellence have never been taught to them in their professional schools -- business, engineering, law, or any other.
We believe this is a tragic flaw in education. We aim to correct it by presenting a new paradigm shift in understanding how to lead in the digital age of connected networks of organizations.
Applied Learning for Teams & Alliances:
We differ from other education organizations in major ways.
First, we recognize that adults learn best when they are in action -- applying what they learn quickly -- so they can see the results and take corrective actions if required.
Second, while we offer learning for individuals, our primary clients are teams and alliances, because that's where and how new ideas get implemented. Groups are best positioned to share ideas, implement things in a coordinated and aligned manner, innovate to create value, and turn problems into opportunities.
Third, our Transformative Action-Learning Engagement methodology begins with core diagnostics which identify key issues for tailoring any program, and set baseline data for metrics of improvement. Then, with the guidance of an expert coach/resultant, we design a series of Action-Learning Workshops to shift the mindsets, skillsets, and toolsets to produce rapid incremental results -- which create momentum and a foundation for the next steps.
Emerging Leaders & Managers:
For those up-and-coming leaders who show promise for the future of your organization, it is essential to get them on the right track right now. Most likely they have been exposed to a muddled mélange of leadership styles and conflicting advice about how to attain the highest performance from people, regardless of background or culture.
Based on teaching tens of thousands of leaders and managers over the years, your emerging leaders will display:
- Strong sense of Mission and Purpose
- Capable of Responding Positively to Adversity
- Willing to take Responsibility for the Results -- good or bad
- Turn Problems into Opportunities
- Build Trustworthy Personal & Team Relationships
- Become strong role models and excellent examples
- Be helpful friends
- Have standards of Excellence that will improve over the years
Our Executive Teaching Staff delivers via a model that pairs a dynamic Thought Leaders with an Experienced Senior Practitioners, producing a complete package of wisdom, insight, tested methods and practical solutions.
So many leadership programs fail to produce the anticipated results because one single executive attends a program, then, when reentering, they face a corporate “immunal rejection” as the old corporate cultural DNA experiences the introduction of new ideas as a “foreign body.” Then, frustrated, the leader becomes disenchanted and leaves for greener pastures.
We strongly encourage every organization to send teams, alliances, or even bring customers and suppliers, to enable a critical mass of internal leaders to co-develop plans that will be easily assimilated and translated into concrete actions producing measurable results.
Collaborative Leadership Excellence creates a sustainable, replicable, and diagnosable foundation for all organizations, regardless of size or industry.
Because our team has been able to integrate and adapt the process approaches of multiple industries, professional and national cultures, and demanding competitive requirements, you can expect our paradigm shifting breakthrough approach.
One critical area is the power and value of Trust-based, Collaborative Leadership. Not only do we integrate our trust modeling with new insights in the brain's neuro-chemistry, but also with an extremely powerful (yet simple) framework for understanding human behavior developed by Harvard Business School Professor Paul Lawrence.
These are coupled with years empirical evidence of how to build and sustain trust in organizations, without creating false expectations or suffering from the perils of blind trust.
Just on the trust-dimension alone, there are significant benefits to be derived: compared with employees at low-trust organizations, the high-trust organizations had
- 106% more energy
- 76% more engaged at work
- 50% more productive
- 88% more would recommend their company to family & friends as a place to work
- 60% more job enjoyment
- 70% more aligned with their companies’ purpose
- 66% closer to their colleagues
- 11% more empathy for their workmates
- 40% less burnout from their work
- 41% .greater sense of accomplishment
Source: Paul Zak & Rebecca Johannsen,
The Neuroscience of Organizational Trust and Business 2021
- Always seek to Build Trust
- Synergy is most likely to occur in Collaborative Environments
- It is better to be trusted than feared or loved
- Default to innovation and action
- People Support what they Help Create
- Teamwork is the basis of competitive advantage
- Exceed each other’s expectations
- Participate and contribute with courtesy and respect
- Maintain full confidentially
- Pursue excellence
- Sharing Expands, Hording Contracts
- Communicate openly and effectively, clearly, frequently, and constructively
- Energize and engage
Courage expands, cowardice diminishes resources.
In dangerous straits, the fears of the timid aggravate the dangers that imperil the brave.
Preventing Senior Executive Post-Partum Implosion
“Senior Executive Post-Partum Implosion” refers to the phenomenon when a senior executive, who has catalyzed and championed a highly effective collaborative effort leaves his/her organization and consequently the collaborative endeavor collapses behind them.
As one former IBM executive explained:
“I was the General Manager of a division. I worked fastidiously to get our hardware engineers to work with our sales teams, software designers, and our field delivery force.
“It was dramatic to watch, and inspiring as it worked.
“But my replacement was so focused on bottom line results, he drove a wedge between every group, expecting individuals, not teams, to perform.
“The good guys soon left, as the culture became cut-throat. My successor drove them out. Soon the whole organization was a wreck."
Steve Rogers, (now President of the Institute) senior executive at Proctor & Gamble stated it another way:
“Looking back at the many years spent in many jobs, so much felt like I was walking on the beach leaving footsteps in the sand. When the tide changed, it was like I’d never been there. I wish I had driven pilings deep into the company’s culture, imbedding it solidly down to the bedrock of management.”
“With the levels of employee churn today, indoctrination training is just not enough. You’ve got to reinforce, retrain, and realign continuously. Having a powerful systems design architecture creates a powerful mindset and skillset that can keep the front line tuned into the big picture.”
Collaborative Excellence is not a new idea, but it is certainly an unfulfilled quest.
Interviews with dozens recently retired senior executives who were champions of collaboration during their very stellar careers revealed some very unsettling commentary:
- We built a great set of companies –with inspired people, innovative, and highly profitable. When I sold the company, the new owners promptly disassembled everything we built, turned our supply chain alliances into a bunch of angry vendors, quality fell apart, and customers left in droves. Today it’s just a shell of its former self.
- Our alliance program produced only 30% of our company’s revenues, but over 50% of its profits. Unfortunately control was more important than results. The new CEO blew up the alliance strategy because he wanted complete control. Profits and stock prices plummeted. I decided to retire, but, in the end, the taste of losing haunts me.
- We changed the culture from adversarial to collaborative, and watched our revenues jump, our profits double, and innovation blossomed everywhere. When I left, everything reverted back to the old habits, and profits dropped dramatically.
When asked what went wrong, executives lamented that they never had a compelling design architecture they could imbed in the culture to sustain their collaborative initiatives.
We’ve heard innumerable versions of these tragic stories from scores of executives, from every industry, from every profession. Oftentimes the departed senior executive is holding back tears as they tell their story the sadness is so severe.
Collectively the tragic tales of “Senior Executive Post-Partum Implosion” highlights the necessity of embedding a Collaborative Systems Architecture into the fabric of an organization’s culture to sustain & engrain the shift in the organization’s culture and permanent thinking.
Our comprehensive approach to Collaborative Leadership is composed of key:
- best practices,
- skill sets,
- diagnostic tools.
that have been thoroughly tested and strongly endorsed in the crucible of action.
Based on years of experience in the field and having conducted innumerable Executive Capability Building sessions, we have concluded that great leadership can be both an intuitive trait and can be developed within inherently good people – it is an art and science that can be practiced and applied with highly predictable results.
We believe our approach to leadership development has several significant competitive advantages.
- Proprietary, capacity building methodology;
- Delivery system is built on real time, real experience Leaders teaching with skilled, experience educators in an interactive, experiential format;
- Proprietary content focused on Collaborative Leadership, and not generic management which mentions leadership and glances over the surface of Leadership principles and outcomes;
- Graduates receive a Certificate of Leadership completion which may convert to credit applied towards a degree in some colleges or universities;
- Executives receive an advanced certificate and will have access to an online membership senior leadership community;
- Membership in an on-line global community;
- Lifelong learning opportunity through updates, expertise based social networks, learning forums and quarterly leadership meet-ups into the future;
- Access to world-class programs at competitive prices;
- Focus on Leadership, exclusively.
An innovative, interactive, experiential curriculum focused on group analysis, discussion, competitive game challenge, and group success creates the learning environment which develops Collaborative Leadership skills and competencies. Our curriculum, a high performance system, is fully integrated, scalable, transferable, and leverages cross-boundary differences as a source of innovation.
When people are able to apply what they learn immediately, they retain 80% of what they learned three weeks later.
But if they can’t apply it right away, their retention plummets to 20% or less three weeks later.
A new teaching methodology, tested and successfully used in global training at the executive and graduate level, uses a Capability Building “workshop” model. The method drives real time results.
The Institute's learning methodology extends standard education methods from a "seminar" model (which fosters discussion) into a highly engaged, outcome- focused learning process.
The Institute’s Research and Development Program is designed to support continuous program improvement and enhancements to The Institute’s library of Intellectual Property.