Over the past 2 months I have been running a weekly program for senior leaders called "Strategic Leadership". In a a nutshell, it is a program to develop both strategic business skills, and human leadership skills.
In my experience, these are the two hardest capabilities to develop, as there are so many dimensions, skills, principles, and diverse contexts to learn.
It can't be rote learned. You can't just study the theory and be great in practice. Experience and judgment is required, to apply the right skill in each moment.
Each context and moment also has multiple options. Do you ask open questions, or drive accountability? Do you focus on managing the present or creating the future? Do you execute with greater focus when declining, or look at creating a new business model? Do you share your vulnerabilities when you don't have the answers, or instill confidence by painting a new vision?
The reality is you need to do all of these things, but how and when depends on the context and your conviction. It cannot be captured in a rule book (even though there are over 1 million books on leadership which have tried). There are frameworks, case studies and research to guide, but at the end leaders needs to decide what they choose. What fits with their values. What has their experiences taught them. What instinctively feels right. While grappling with all of this subjective "grey", P&L's and people metrics provide a "black and white" scoreboard.
So how do you teach and learn this? Definitely not through linear methods. You need to "zig zag" between IQ and EQ, Strategy and Leadership. Go deep on individual skills, but identify how they all connect broadly.
The best learning comes from diverging and converging and accessing the collective intelligence and experiences of the group. It's an approach I call "living learning", where experiences challenge frameworks, and personal reflection moves learning from knowledge, to insight to conviction.
I'm passionate about elevating Strategic Leadership. It absolutely can be accelerated, but it requires a different learning model.
Do you need to develop Strategic Leadership, through living learning? Are you ready to develop your own insights and conviction?