Last week was the start of a leadership development journey I am conducting for a group of 35 leaders from one of Pakistan’s most famous companies. The fist step of their leadership development journey was primarily focused on self discovery and personal mastery. At the end of the 2-day session I received one of the best compliments I could’ve wished for: a senior executive of the company said in the feedback session that I helped him discover that work is about life and not the other way around.

I simply love it when I’m able to enhance people’s perspective and they have an “A-Ha” moment.

Of course participants asked me if I was afraid that on the basis of the conversation we were having, people might come to a conclusion that what they were doing today isn’t what they wanted to do in the future. And as a result, what if they resign form the company that was paying for the leadership development program I was conducting? My answer to that challenge was and always will be this:

People should follow their heads and hearts, do what they think can make the biggest impact and provide them the greatest satisfaction (whether it be money, self-worth, appreciation, or providing a challenge).

If this means that people move on from where they’re currently working…then so be it.

Of course not every CEO or HR Director is enlightened enough to accept that it’s better for a company to stimulate leaders to think out of the “company box”. The fear of losing someone often overshadows their understanding that they will most likely will get better leaders after they go through self-reflection activities. Their leaders will provide better contribution as well as engaging and inspiring their followers. But I guess that companies that don’t see all this wouldn’t invest in leadership development in the first place.

Lets be clear, my aim isn’t to encourage leaders to stop doing what they’re currently doing and leave their company. My aim is for people to discover what drives them and for them to identify what they want to do with the rest of their lives. In very few cases does this lead to them coming to the conclusion that what they’re doing today is not what they want to be doing tomorrow. In most situations this leads to people combining what they do today with other passions and creating a better balance between the two.

I strongly believe that in doing so leaders achieve 10 very important discovers about their inner self.

  1. Leaders will be able the enhance their ‘impact footprint’
  2. Leaders will maximize their potential
  3. Leaders will become more engaged
  4. Leaders will learn more
  5. Leaders will increase their network
  6. Leaders will be better able to inspire followers
  7. Leaders will appreciate their organisation for the opportunity
  8. Leaders will become much more externally focused
  9. Leaders will lead a more balanced life
  10. Leaders will be more at peace

And as a result, off all of this,

Leaders will Become Better Leaders

And that, of course, is what the leadership development journey is all about. Becoming better leaders, delivering results today and building the capabilities for people, teams, organisations and communities to deliver sustainable results in the future.