Three (or Four) Big Excuses that Prevent Leadership Growth

I've heard lots of excuses for why leaders don't provide time for their own development. Most of them are pretty lame when you consider what they could gain from regular personal and professional development.

The first excuse is to blame others.
When there are obstacles in the company, this leader's first instinct is to deflect responsibility rather than consider what he or she could do differently. Leaders who accept responsibility are primed for growth, open to coaching and interested in finding solutions. If they see a ball drop, they are interested in picking it up and moving it forward. In contrast, if it's not their problem, then whose problem is it?

Another big excuse is time.
Leaders who are "too busy" to invest time in themselves means they are too busy to focus on the big picture needs of the organization. Time to reflect, collect new perspectives and apply them to the organization should be part of every leader's regular schedule.

What if it's not in the budget?
To that excuse, I say, let's solve all your budget problems with 12 cost-saving ideas gleaned in a peer group, a coaching session or educational conference. Say you are making a software investment that costs $130,000, but you find out at an outside venue that you could use something cheaper and more user-friendly? You just saved yourself loads of time, money and distraction by stepping out of the office and getting a new perspective.

I also hear the excuse that it's not about time, but timing.
Leaders are often heading up large strategic planning initiatives, client projects or investments that require their focus. I understand, but isn't that the best time to collect outside insight and feedback, skills and support? No leader is an island; the best leaders seek fresh ideas, collaboration and a change of venue to refresh their view on things. When you're down on the ground, you tend to see more dirt than sky.

Think about your own excuses for not investing in your professional development. Then bring them to Allied Executives for a breakthrough. Let's move that ball forward together.

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