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Ian Ziskin, President, EXec EXcel Group LLC
Leadership development experts used to say, "Past track record predicts future success." In the future, we will likely say, "Past track record is only a valid predictor of future success if the past looks anything like the future." The connection between past and future conditions is tenuous at best. At worst, we could make determinations about leadership development, readiness and succession based on all the wrong factors and criteria because the future may look nothing like the past. The conditions, challenges and pace of change may be completely different.
So, all our emphasis on developing ready now leaders must give way to developing ready able leaders. We no longer really know if leaders are ready now. At best, we can prepare them to be ready able—to have the situational awareness, flexibility, savvy and leadership capabilities required to quickly understand and adapt to changing conditions. Leadership development in the future will be about identifying and developing potential, which, in turn, translates into being ready and able to handle whatever the future throws at us.
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