In today's world, everyone wants to be an expert on everything. Thanks to the internet, we have access to a plethora of information, and it can be easy to feel like we know everything we need to know about any given topic. Unfortunately, this has led to a rise in pseudo-experts or people who claim to be experts in a particular field despite having no formal training or education. One area where this is particularly prevalent is in the leadership industry.
Imagine a scenario where a non-expert decides to become a leadership coach. They may have no formal training in leadership, no experience leading teams, and no fundamental understanding of what it takes to be an effective leader. Nevertheless, they decide to start a coaching business and begin soliciting business from organizational leaders.
Imagine an organizational leader looking for a leadership coach but unsure how to discern a real expert from a pseudo-expert. They see the non-expert's website, read a few testimonials, and decide to hire them. The non-expert begins working with the organizational leader, advising them on how to lead their team.
The problem is that the non-expert doesn't really know what they're talking about. They may have read a few articles or books on leadership but don't have the necessary in-depth knowledge or real-world experience. As a result, the advice they give may be incomplete or even incorrect.
Not knowing the difference between good and bad leadership advice, the organizational leader may adopt the advice given to them by the non-expert. After all, much of the pseudo-leadership sounds pretty good on the surface. Let's say that they may make a few bad decisions based on this bad advice. Unfortunately, those decisions can have negative consequences for the team. For example, the non-expert may advise the organizational leader to adopt a management style that doesn't work well with their team. The leader, not knowing any better, implements this style, and it leads to team hindrances. These hindrances can become organizational hindrances, and the organization may eventually fail.
When an organization fails, it can have negative impacts on employees. Employee may lose their jobs or suffer financial hardship because the organization is forced to cut back. This unfortunate event, in turn, can impact their families. The ultimate impact is harm to the broader community and local economy. The point is that a little bad advice doesn’t stop at the person who accepted it. Moreover, such events give the leadership industry a bad reputation, even though the real problem is with pseudo-experts. Unfortunately, the organizational leader who had the bad experience will now likely avoid getting the help they desperately need. This too allows problems to fester.
Leadership is an important skill, and it's crucial for organizations to have effective leaders at all levels. Hiring a leadership practitioner can be a great way to develop leadership skills, but it's important to ensure that the person you hire is a real expert with a proven track record of success because the potential cause and effect of pseudo-leadership advice can be disastrous for organizations, their employees, and the broader community. It's up to organizational leaders to be discerning and to ensure they're hiring real experts with the knowledge and experience necessary to provide effective leadership coaching. Doing so can help ensure their organizations thrive and their employees and communities are positively impacted. So, how do organizational leaders do that?
The National Leaderology Association can be invaluable for organizational leaders seeking to hire a leadership practitioner or leaderologist. As an organization dedicated to advancing leaderology, the science of leadership, the National Leaderology Association ensures that its members have studied and mastered their respective leadership focus areas, be it strategic, organizational, sport, education, health, or otherwise. By choosing a practitioner who is a member of the National Leaderology Association, an organizational leader can rest assured that they are working with a qualified and knowledgeable professional who is more likely to provide sound leadership and organizational advice. In addition, the National Leaderology Association requires ongoing training and education for its members, ensuring that they stay up-to-date on the latest developments in the field of leaderology and can provide the most effective guidance to their clients.
So, if you're considering hiring a leadership professional or leaderologist, look for the NLA designations. Don't settle for less. After all, a lot is riding on the decision.