The Leadership Development
Interface: Aligning Leaders And
Organizations Toward More
Effective Leadership Learning
Tola Petgrave
Leadership Development?
• Why do the leadership development interventions
work for some and not for others?
• Do participants cultivate and apply the knowledge
beyond leadership development programs?
• How can leadership programs become more
The Problem
• How do individual leaders navigate their leadership
development journey?
• How do organizations work with individual leaders
to provide effective development opportunities and
• To what extent are leaders and their organizations
connected and aligned?
Trend in Leadership Theories
• Traditional leadership focused on traits, behaviors
and competencies
• Contingency theories includes the view of the
situation and the context in which leadership occurs
(Leader-Follower dyad)
• An interconnected approach of a “whole system”
where leaders and organizations can engage, plan,
and evaluate development efforts.
Leader Development
• Leader development suggests that leading starts with
an intrapersonal perspective
• A leader is the sum of his or her life experiences and
comes into a leadership role with a conscious or
unconscious philosophy of life and leading
• The internal drivers of leaders focus on their values,
beliefs, and well-being
Leadership Development
• Proposes that leadership can be broken down into teachable
aspects and learned through formal and informal interventions.
• Leadership development is approached in organizations using:
-Traditional leadership development programs in classroom
-Action learning through working on real projects to practice
leadership competencies
-Leadership development through experience in development
positions to stretch leadership roles
-360 degree feedback from peers, subordinates, and supervisors
The Leadership Development
Interface Model
• Leadership development is a connected and
multidimensional frame and not simply the linear
process of leader-follower
• The model is divided into 4 quadrants
• Q1- Leader reflection and discovery
• Q2- Leader multi-level feedback
• Q3-Leadership context, practice and fit
• Q4- Leadership learning and development
The Leadership Development
Interface Model
• Quadrant 1 consists of the individual’s fundamental
values and beliefs, personality, vision and goals
• Quadrant 2 provides feedback through formal
assessment, coaching, measured ability and multistakeholder perceptions
• Quadrant 3 specifies the learning space and
applicable context
• Quadrant 4 involves interventions and processes
where leadership development can be mapped and
The Case for Alignment
• It provides an opportunity toward more meaningful,
measured, and successful leadership improvement
for both individuals and organizations.
• Leadership development becomes a shared
experience through learning conversations between
leaders and their stakeholders around all areas of
• It creates connectivity and interrelationships
between the four elements that make up the
leadership development interface.
Implication for Individual Leader
• Helps to understand the essential parts of the
leadership development process they own and need
to direct
• Provides a picture of how their leadership
development connects to the organization and
directs their interaction with other key stakeholders
Implication for Direct Managers
• The model could be used as a tool to determine what
is appropriate for leadership development
• Clarifies their role in developing leadership in others
and ensuring there is agreement with direct report
on initiatives to develop leadership
Implication for HR &
Development Specialists
• Tool for leadership development audit to determine
where there is over-emphasis or under-emphasis
• Serves as a framework to handle conflicts and
misalignment for individual leaders who are
confused or dissatisfied with the leadership
Case Study
• Hanson, B. (2013). The leadership development
interface: aligning leaders toward more effective
leadership learning. Advances in Developing Human
Resources, 15(1), 106-120.
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