Developing Leaders in a Virtual World

Crop faceless male entrepreneur in formal wear sitting at table with cup of coffee and notebook while working on project in laptop

Effective leadership that inspires teams and promotes growth is tough enough under “normal” circumstances. Leaders are constantly challenged with breaking through clutter, knowing what’s around the corner and addressing it, while enabling teams to perform at their highest levels. However, doing so in an ever-expanding virtual world can feel daunting.

I consistently hear from senior executives that their top leaders need more “training,” expressing concern about issues such as:

  • The transfer of high performers into leadership positions without the leadership training the positions require
  • The elimination of upper- and mid-level leaders to reduce expenses, leaving those next in line responsible for filling departing executives’ shoes without the benefit of leadership training
  • The cessation of individual and team leadership training and development during the pandemic, motivated by doubts about the effectiveness of virtual training
  • The absence of leadership training for successive teams, leaving upcoming leaders poorly equipped to take the reins, as senior teams transition out

These frequently seen “training” challenges are more specifically issues of leadership development. It is critical that these development activities are synchronized for the entire leadership team.

All too often, individuals – especially those at the high or low extremes of the performance spectrum – are singled out for coaching, to fortify the strengths or address the weaknesses they may bring to the team. It is far more impactful when all members of the team are concurrently provided with the tools and language to move forward as a unit, up-leveling performance and accelerating growth.

The question remains: can virtual team development possibly be effective? The good news is a resounding YES! Velocity has always conducted executive coaching remotely. We find that concurrent coaching – when each member of the team is individually coached simultaneously – is, in fact, most effectively done remotely. Not only is it more convenient for maintaining schedules, but this format also provides space for each individual to introspect, address their specific issues, develop their own strengths, and bring their greatest assets to the team.

Whether it’s called “training” or leadership development, it will be a “one and done” without permanent change if progress is not tracked. We have experienced this first-hand and, as a result, we use a sophisticated online tool to provide CEOs with an anytime snapshot into team members’ progress, delivering information that enables faster decisions. These details also help identify more effective ways to motivate individuals and synchronize the team.

About Velocity

For a decade, Velocity Leadership Consulting has facilitated science-based, leadership development programs for teams through virtual channels. Unique in the coaching world, our coaches have each had careers as corporate senior executives and blend their C-level experience with the masterful implementation of neurolinguistics to address behavioral patterns. As a result, our coaches consistently deliver a coaching experience that brings about real, sustainable change and one of the highest ROI of training dollars in the industry.