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How to measure the ROI of leadership development

by Staff Writer
03 Dec 2020 at 10:27hrs | Views
'Impact' is perhaps the only and the most significant metric to evaluate leadership development programs.

Thus, as the departments and resources of an organization are now under the microscope, thanks to the constant disruption by technology, it is crucial for leadership development programs to have a detailed action plan to measure its impact.

Yet it is only around 18-per cent of the businesses that go forward to gather these impact metrics, which was perhaps one of the major reasons for leaders to question the worth of such programs lately.  

Moreover, it is anyway a pretty costly proposition to take the leaders away from their everyday duties. Without showing them the actual worth in terms of impact metrics or say, ROI, will surely be a challenge.

When you are a training evaluator, make sure you have an answer to the benefit the businesses will have by sending participants for a leadership development program sooner rather than later.

Don't worry. It might seem like an overwhelming task but it can certainly be broken down into steps and ways. You can learn the same in the article below.

Long-term ROI

Leaders and stakeholders of the company will always be in search of observable outcomes when it comes to the impact of a leadership development program.

One factor that works well to measure such results is indeed gathering data. Now, it might be a little difficult for many, but one should know that there are several systems to gather such information on the ROI of the programs. The four levels of the Kirkpatrick/Phillips Model being the most widely used.

Find the four levels below.

Reaction. It is true that the reaction is subjective. But with the right tools, says a survey, it is still possible to gather this data. Use this survey to note down the reaction of participants to the program. Understand their thoughts, their feelings in regards to the program as a whole, the venue, the content, relevancy, and more.

Knowledge. You should consider gathering data by assessing the newly acquired knowledge, capabilities, and skills of the participants.  

Behavior 360-degree. It is the assessment that helps you measure the transfer of learning of the leadership skills of the participants by their supervisors.
Impact and ROI. You can gather data in regards to the impact and ROI by assessing the changes in participants' productivity. This can mostly be observed by the supervisors and via direct reports. It is also where you can measure how the program benefited the organization.

When you are measuring the ROI of a leadership development program, make sure you keep in mind to focus more on results rather than quality. Your key focus should be on the effect of the learning when you are calculating ROI.

Moreover, it is also often suggested that you go beyond monetary outcomes. For ROI of leadership programs, also consider effectiveness, job impact, business results, and more. Also, always combine your ROI metrics with the anecdotes and feedback from the participants to figure out the true value of your program.

It is important for evaluators to know that the surveys should be conducted after the programs become more robust. Here are a few key considerations that should be undertaken before gathering data.

Make sure your program includes real-world issues and challenges in order to give participants a taste of what truly awaits. It will help them apply newly acquired knowledge and make assessment effective.
Surveys are not to be done just once. It is best to conduct these surveys over several months.
Ensure that your assessment also includes concrete examples of how the participants were able to apply the new knowledge and skills in their daily roles.
Also, once the program is completed, you should assign projects that will prompt participants to utilize their skills. Make sure you have your measurement checkpoints ready for this.

When you have a strong leadership development program in place with the right method of measuring ROI, it is not difficult to build a team that is more engaged, productive, and has higher retention rates.

Source - Byo24News