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Training to Lead: Future Leaders Need to Learn

Last Modified Friday, January 10, 2014
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Every organization needs leaders to make things better, for themselves or for the business. So, how can your organization develop more leaders? And what can you do to develop your staff’s leadership skills? To help you learn more about what you can do to improve leadership skills within your company – both your own and the leadership skills of those around you – Insights shares these tips for developing your staff’s skills to your organization’s advantage.

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Every organization needs leaders to make things better, for themselves or for the business. So, how can your organization develop more leaders? And what can you do to develop your staff’s leadership skills?

To help you learn more about what you can do to improve leadership skills within your company – both your own and the leadership skills of those around you – Insights shares these tips for developing your staff’s skills to your organization’s advantage.

Encourage Training
Leaders must know how to gather, sort, and structure information, and then connect it in new ways to create intelligence. Enabling your staff to perform to their potential and drive business initiatives forward is a significant factor in the success of any organization.

Every company is seeking new ways to increase revenues while decreasing costs. Some companies believe one of the easiest ways to do this is to cut their training budget. However, if your business is interested in long-term viability it’s important to recognize that to be successful you must continually develop your people.

Fill in Your Gaps
When identifying your training goals consider your organization’s gaps. Listen to colleagues and collaborators. Talk to people at different levels, in different divisions, from different companies to determine your gaps.

  • Growth gaps are areas of knowledge and skills needed to reach a career goal.
  • Opportunity gaps are areas of knowledge and skills needed to take advantage of an upcoming opportunity.
  • Performance gaps are areas of knowledge and skills needed to improve performance and are usually indicated during performance reviews.

Maintain Your “Super Users”
When you first installed your current software, you most likely had “super users” — leaders who knew the system very well and were advocates for its use. Other users knew they could go to the super users to get answers. Where are your super users today? According to Olin Thompson, principal of Process ERP Partners, to halt or reverse application erosion, you need to create a new generation of super users.

Thompson tells organizations to identify staff who have the enthusiasm (or could get the enthusiasm) for their system. “You need to excite them and bring up their level of knowledge,” says Thompson. How? “Training, attendance at user group activities, or putting them with super users from other companies will all help to recreate super users.” Don’t forget to formally recognize super users and make them proud of their knowledge and role.

Assign a Seeker of Value
Leadership requires vision. Put one of your team members in charge of understanding your software – an informal, internal sales person rather than a consultant. Task them to get staff to use more of their software or design more ways to get more value out of what they are already doing.

Walk the Talk
"Walking the talk," is the "doing" part of leading. Knowing is one thing; doing is quite another. The principles of leadership remain constant. It's how you put leadership into practice – listening and talking with others - utilizing training to fill in your identified gaps - that will make your organization smarter.

 

Have you identified your organization’s growth, opportunity and performance gaps? Visit the Microsoft Business Solutions Training section to narrow in on the training solutions your organization needs.
 

Please contact Microsoft Regional Service Center with any training-related questions.

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