A clear testament to how dynamic the field of leadership development has become could not be more obvious in the trends that come and go in it over time. This is nothing short of conducive for these trends ultimately drive its growth. Considering the importance of having solid leadership skills in these modern times, all agencies and platforms that promote leadership development should be commended, especially those that are results-driven. 

What’s good is that a lot of these companies are almost always open to adopting technology – adopting, in short, positive change. Is it any surprise, then, that technology (spearheaded specifically by AI) is at the heart of most of these trends? Ultimately, it paves the way to different routes that bypass roadblocks that seemed insurmountable in the past, allowing better opportunities for leadership development to foster. 

However, it’s not the sole cog in the learning machine, as can be proven by the other trends in leadership development that will and have begun to dominate 2020. Read on to learn how each one reinforces the foundations of this critical field. 

Learning on-the-go will gain more traction. 


Driven by the want (and arguably need) to be able to access leadership training anytime and anywhere, expect more mobile solutions to be delivered for millennials who have managerial roles. This generation might not have a majority slice of management pie yet, but since millennials are essentially the next in line, don’t be surprised if mobile leadership training becomes the norm.

This underlines the need to focus on flexibility and versatility while delivering effective training to these leaders of the future. Online programs already make this possible, as well as a handful of leadership apps like monday.com. The former undoubtedly deserves more recognition, though, for the educational settings they create are more conducive for better leadership training. This particularly applies to millennials and anyone who finds mobile learning to be just as good (if not better) than conventional modes of learning.  

Now, it’s all about long-term, continuous training.


Realizing that short-term training in the form of seminars and programs isn’t an effective approach, most leadership development training now places focus on sustaining education. It’s so much about learning and knowing as applying what you have learned, after all. And if this involves only one-time, isolated training, there’s a very high chance that managers and leaders will not be able to apply what they learn – or else forget it altogether. This is why consistency is key. And what better way to aim for the long term than through regular, day-to-day training? 


We mean behavioral training in the most benign sense, of course. It’s the instruction that focuses more on encouraging (not forcing!) you to apply what you learn every day – to tackle a new challenge each time you wake up. 

One creative platform that serves as a great example of a modern development training program is Prohabits. Why so? Well, it focuses on what it terms as the “the little things”, micro-actions that you can choose to commit to on an almost daily basis. It complements these objectives with motivational messages that serve to encourage and engage you further to push yourself and develop your essential skills as a leader. 

Furthermore, it “nudges” you regularly, which has been proven to be effective in helping you stick to what needs to be done to improve your leadership qualities. This is but one of the ways development training programs are pushing boundaries and exercising their creativity to hone their teaching methods and strategies. You can only expect this to be the prevailing trajectory of programs in the future; at least, those that are serious in training managers to the fullest. 

Finally, the team and the platform are very agile, timely and relevant content is created and shared continuously.  The latest example is their free 20-day track “ThriveRemotely” designed for the leaders dealing with the remote environment for almost every team they manage.

Artificial intelligence will permeate the field further. 


What other technology can compare to the far-reaching influence of AI? What’s wonderful about AI is that it is so compatible with a learning field like leadership development. And all of it really hinges on AI’s unprecedented ability to greatly focus on individuals. Its power to deliver thoroughly personalized content makes it possible to vastly improve how leaders acquire new skills and hone them to the best of their abilities.

Gaining very personalized insights into each individual’s leadership qualities will also allow agencies and companies that use AI to pinpoint those that truly show plenty of promise for more growth as a leader. 

Which training program is more effective for a particular person or the group at large? Who are the ones truly ready to take a step higher into the rungs of leadership? How can you help leaders take the best, shortest route towards promotion? AI can readily answer these essential questions and impart vital insights to make programs more efficient. No other technology can rival the boon AI provides to leadership development with such advantages considered. 

Expect more emphasis on change management.

Considering the rapid evolution of technology and the influence of tech on the field, programs are expected to be able to adapt just as quickly to them. This fact, in turn, emphasizes the need for leaders to be just as proficient in change management. If you are managing an IT team that has to deal with frequent updates in its infrastructures, how will you be able to respond swiftly and efficiently to such regular major changes? Also, in the event of a reorganization in the entire company, you are expected to conduct that transition with relative ease. 

The same can be said when tackling unforeseen disruptions in the workplace. This is especially true if the interruption will require you to guide your team and company to a completely different work setting, which takes time getting used to, or if it will cripple one or two fundamental aspects of the business. Proper instruction in change management takes care of such issues, so it shouldn’t be surprising that leadership development programs will give it more attention in 2020 and beyond. 



The future could not look any brighter for leadership development with these interesting trends considered. What’s certain is that there’s a noticeable pivot towards efficiency and ensuring that all the leadership training is applied in real-world situations as much as possible. You can’t expect anything less from leaders expected to spur a modern world beset by equally dynamic challenges.

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