How to Get Leaders from Point A to Point B

Ryan Gottfredson

by Ryan Gottfredson

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To me, the first and most primary lesson of leadership is: To be an effective leader, we have to become someone others want to follow.

Unfortunately, no leader or person is perfect. We all have room to become more of someone that others want to follow.

Consider where you currently are or where the leaders on your team currently are (Point A), and consider what a more ideal “Point B” looks like.

Point A

Across my work with executives and leaders, here are the most common “Point A” struggles that I come across:

Point A

The executives and leaders that I work with don’t struggle with all of these things, but almost all struggle with at least one of these things.

Is there one (or more) that you struggle with? When you think about the leaders on your team, is there one (or more) that they struggle with?

Point B

If the above list represents a current “Point A,” the following list represents a future “Point B:”

Point B

From Point A to Point B

Questions that quickly arise are:

  • What if we could help you or your fellow leaders make the shift from Point A to Point B? What difference would that make on you, your team, and/or your organization?
  • Will these transitions come naturally?
  • What is the best way to help leaders go from Point A to Point B? And, is there a way we can speed the process up?

Point A to Point B

The Difference When Making the Shift from Point A to Point B

When a leader is operating in Point A, they are not someone others want to follow. They are someone others have to follow. And, they are ultimately putting a limit on their success, their team’s success, and the organization’s success.

Will the Shift from Point A to Point B Occur Naturally?

Human development research has found that it is unlikely for these shifts to occur naturally. And, if they occur at all, the shifts generally require a significant amount of time (i.e., years).

The Best (and Only) Way to Help Leaders Shift from Point A to Point B

It is important to recognize that the shift from Point A to Point B does not come about through improving knowledge, improving skills, or gaining experience (i.e., horizontal development).

Making the shift from Point A to Point B only comes about through a form of development called vertical development, which is a form of development focused on upgrading one’s internal operating system.

Doing Vertical Development Right

Vertical development efforts range in depth from shallow to deep. Of course, the greater the depth and the more time spent at depth, the more quickly the shift from Point A to Point B.

Here is an example of different vertical development efforts that range in depth:

Depth of Vertical Development Efforts

Doing the Work

If you would like to make your own shifts from Point A to Point B, or if you would like to help leaders in your organization make the shifts from Point A to Point B, I would love to help you. Let’s connect: Connect with Ryan.

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