How should a leadership program be created?

What should a leadership development program be, internal or external?

The companies are putting in a lot of resources to develop leaders. But there is always a need to understand how to do it.

Whether to take internal help or use external resources for developing a leader?

The leadership needs to be developed for the future. The company needs to set up some objectives before it starts working on its leadership program.

What is leadership development?

The aim of this program is to increase the skills of individuals who can become leaders. It starts with recognizing their skills through various means, including the survey of peers and even tests. When such individuals have been discovered, their training consists of workshops and coaching to gain perfection in their leadership qualities. This training prepares leaders for the challenges they face during their jobs.

When the environment is so volatile today, the leaders’ job is to ensure that employees don’t get unnerved during the transition and are prepared to handle them.

The basic quality of a leader is to see that there is collaboration among employees to attain the common goals of a company. Apart from that, they should also be able to solve conflicts through their communication skills. The leaders should be able to encourage teamwork in the organization and build trust among team members.

Taking the help of a vendor:


  • Expertise: 

The company can take help from an external vendor to contribute to the leadership development program or use internal service. It isn’t easy to develop a leadership program, given that your company’s entire future depends on it.

When a company hires a vendor for leadership development, it has advantages like benefitting from their expertise. The external team has experts who specialize in different streams and are ready to do the job. They also have worked on courses for different industries in this domain, and they can be altered to suit your needs.

  • No partiality

Externally, when a company hires a vendor for leadership development, they are not biased in favor of a particular candidate.

This works for a candidate with all the leadership qualities, but is not so popular. Sometimes, the management can’t see things objectively, but this is not the case with a leadership development vendor, who can assess every candidate for his strengths and weaknesses. It can build a leadership development program depending on how good is a potential candidate for the leadership role.


  • More costs:

All this expertise of a vendor comes at a cost. But, the vendor might not have an understanding of the company’s branding.  The internal team is also aware of the challenges of such a program. It can be easier on costs rather than hiring an external team. However, the internal resources don’t have the caliber to evaluate the needs of such a program.

The internal team that is supposed to do the job knows who are the participants for the job and how to groom them to become future leaders. It depends on how much talent you have in the house to develop a leadership program.

  • Lack of confidentiality

There can also be confidentiality problems in a company when the external L&D team sits with a leader and takes their opinions on what should be the leadership program. An organization cannot share its leadership tactics with external vendors because they are the secrets of a business.

How to choose a leader from inside or outside?

Internal hiring:


  • Limited choice:

When a leader is selected from the inside, an organization must choose from limited resources. They might be unable to choose the best leader because there is not much choice available. There has to be proper management of the selection because if proper caution is not taken, an organization might end up choosing the wrong leader due to favoritism.

  • Negativity against leaders from outside:

Leadership development is the best answer to the problems of a company.

Organizations can also hire external leaders, but the employees might refuse to accept them. Such leaders have their own viewpoints on things because they hold experience in a competitor’s firm. But when there is reliable staff in the company who can be promoted to the role of a leader, bringing someone from the outside is not the best possible idea.

The employees might feel discriminated against or that the organization is not appreciating their talent and giving them the promotion opportunities required. When an organization hires leaders from the inside, there is a need to train them and implement a leadership development program. Although the employees don’t have leadership experience, they understand how things happen in a company, i.e., what is the culture and the norms.

But this need does not exist when the company hires someone from outside who is quite experienced for their job.


An organization can also strike a balance between the internal and external leadership development programs. Such organizations can ensure that they have a basic development of leaders to ensure that they imbibe the organization’s values. Next, they should hire an external development company to ensure that the leaders are exposed to different circumstances prevailing in the industry and how to handle them through skills to attain growth.

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