Chief Executive Magazine has just released their latest Best Companies for Leaders ranking. To no one’s surprise, the best companies are brands that we all know – including P&G, IBM, and GE – holding the top spots. Other than filling idle curiosity, can a list like this actually help us build better leaders?
What Criteria was Used?
Identify the criteria used to select the rankings, and evaluate your leadership efforts against them. The companies in the Best Companies for Leaders ranking were evaluated on five criteria. Here are three that are simple to measure and mission critical for your leadership development to have a chance at success.
While certainly not exhaustive, you need three yes’s above just to get invited to the dance.
Anyone I Know?
Go through the ranking to see if there are organizations where you may have contacts or where you can make contact. Networking with Leadership Development Professionals at any of these organizations will give you an opportunity to “see behind the curtain” of what their Leadership Development programs look like.
It is relatively easy to find anecdotal insights into how each organization has created their leadership culture. However, you want the inside perspective. Perspective – with warts and all – likely doesn’t serve to sell leadership books but will be infinitely more valuable as you work to build your own leadership culture.
Who else is Doing It?
Having your CEO actively involved in the Leadership Development Process is easily the most important factor in determining the success or failure of your Leadership Development process. Share rankings like this one to continually sell the value of Leadership Development and the value of your CEO’s involvement. Seeing others – specifically industry leaders – successfully prioritize leadership always makes it an easier decision to do the same. The fact that shareholder performance was used as criteria for ranking shows that investment in leadership has an impact on the bottom line.
Lists and rankings are very popular as they are easy to digest and can encourage debate. Modern Life magazine likens lists to fast food, “they’re cheap, the taste is overrated and they do nothing for your waistline, but we happily munch through them anyway.” By taking a different approach to how we digest lists similar to Best Companies for Leadership, we can actually find some morsels of nutrition.