The New Learning Leader

In these hard times, it’s morning for learning leaders who are fortunate enough to see the light.

By Brent Filson - 2009

In these hard times, when jobs and careers are up for grabs, it’s morning for learning leaders who are fortunate enough to see the light.

For you have a once-in-a-career opportunity to transform your job and career in rewarding new ways.

You can do this by embracing a new kind of learning leadership.

The old learning leader function involved your working out of HR, developing and disseminating training programs.

(Mind you, training, of course, will always be a part of the learning function. These days, training is more important than ever. But those learning leaders who focus on training exclusively in this long, brutal downturn will be discovering that their jobs and careers are experiencing a demise like being nibbled to death by ducks.)

The new function involves learning leadership being a key driver of the company’s absolutely crucial results — e.g., top and bottom-line earnings growth — and thus becoming a full-fledged member of the company’s C-suite.  The CRO, Chief Results Officer, if you will.  

The old function carried out the company’s strategy.

The new function is key in developing and executing strategy.

The old function was handed a take-it-or-leave-it budget and told to make things work within that budget.

The new learning leader function will have the leeway to develop its own budget, much like the company’s rain makers do.

Learning leaders are set up perfectly to meet the challenges of these hard times. Today, companies need to reduce expenses and control costs; they need to curtail capital investments and rigorously manage the ones they have; they need to bring revenue in line with debt. And they need to grow that revenue, or at least slow the rate of decline, despite what may be stagnant sales in moribund markets.

As a learning leader, you should help drive all these activities. You speak the company’s language. You align learning objectives with business goals. You interact with all functions and all ranks of employees. You think, speak, and act tactically and strategically. You introduce and disseminate new concepts throughout the organization.

Most important of all — and this is fundamental to your opportunity — these combined advantages can enable you, working with leaders of all ranks and functions, to get the whole company moving forward as a single, motivated unit. No other leader in your company, except the CEO, has this kind of potential clout.

Your company can’t control many aspects of this slumping economy — tightening credit, plummeting consumer confidence, shrinking markets, etc.. But the company can control — or, to put it another way, unleash — its small-unit leadership activities. Funding such activities should be seen as capital investments — the most efficient and effective capital investments that can be made.

Clearly, just recognizing you have C-suite value will not make it automatically happen. You must convince others. For instance, many executives have a narrow view of learning leadership. They see your function primarily in terms of training and, hence, when hard times come, as an expense item. And when you’re viewed an expense item, your budget and your job are at risk.

However, executives will begin to change their attitudes when they understand you can help them: 

As a learning leader, you are well-positioned to boost the value of your company in many ways. But you will only succeed if you become the new learning leader you’re capable of becoming.

As this leader, you can very well have an exciting new career as a C-suite leader with salary, responsibility, and perks that go with the position.

Note from Brent Filson: 2009 marks my 25th year helping leaders of all ranks and functions improve their effectiveness.  I have a 9-step process that can help position you for a C-suite role.  With the process, you have the opportunity to be a key driver of earnings growth.  Please call, and let's talk about how my methodologies can make it happen for you.

$50,000 Guarantee:
I can help your individual leaders boost their job and career performance. For instance, check out our one-day Leadership Talk sessions that comes with a $50,000 guarantee.

Here’s a one-day session for leaders.

Here’s a one-day session for sales/marketing leaders.

Business Results:

Leadership is too important for the advancement of your client’s job performances and careers and also for the success of your company to have leadership development simply fulfill training objectives. For the past 22+ years, I’ve been helping leaders of all ranks and functions worldwide get great business results.

"Brent Filson knows how to help others get results! His programs are proven in a variety of settings including industry, government, non-profit and the military proving that the way he practices and coaches leadership can work for any organization willing to invest the time and energy necessary to influence their people to produce at their highest productivity levels.”
—Joe Javorski, Director, Worldwide Staffing, Analog Devices

Total Systems Solutions:

I can also help you help your leaders develop and execute unique, customized, total-solution systems for every function of your business.

“One of the key components of Brent’s methodologies is their tremendous value in driving monumental change through the leadership of others in the matrix supporting your cause. The actions of developing cause leaders has allowed ordinary teams in my organization to achieve extraordinary results.”
—Robert Cancalosi, Global General Manager, General Electric Medical

Lots Of Help On My Web Site:

On my web site, you’ll find many of my books, articles, interviews, course descriptions, and instruction methodologies that will help you in many ways boost your job performance and advance your career by helping your clients get the right results in the right ways.

Best wishes,

Brent Filson
Brent Filson