Keynotes & Workshops

Engaging presentations and customized learning experiences keep you on top of today’s most pressing issues in leadership and managing executive talent. Contact us to customize and schedule an unforgettable learning experience on one of the sample topics below – or the topic that matters most to your organization.

120 min Workshop

Mastering the Opposing Forces of Leadership

The modern business environment is defined by dizzying change and ambiguity. To navigate this complexity, today’s managers must be versatile—able to change course and adapt on the fly. Versatility requires a wide repertoire of skills and a mastery of opposing forces: being hands-on and driving performance, yet empowering and engaging people; setting direction with a strategic vision, yet managing the tactical details of execution. Working from a practical model of the tensions and trade-offs that make leadership a balancing act, Rob will guide you through personal learning and self-development based on peer dialogue and reflection. Participants learn how to articulate their basic beliefs and assumptions about leadership, explore their mindsets and attitudes, and see how their beliefs, assumptions, mindsets and attitudes show up in how they lead. Plus, they come away with a clear understanding of where they have struck a good balance in their leadership style and how they could adjust to achieve a better balance, increase their versatility and become more effective.

60 min Keynote

The Rest You Need to Know about Strengths-based Development

Along with the rise of the Positive Psychology movement, an approach to leadership development that focuses entirely on strengths has gained popularity. This method encourages leaders to identify their areas of natural talent and concentrate on building them to their fullest potential. Compared to the traditional focus on fixing weaknesses, the strengths-based approach has great appeal, but its dangers are too easily overlooked. Rob identifies these pitfalls and explains how a sensible approach to strengths fits into a more balanced strategy for developing versatile leaders.

60 min Keynote

Why Aren’t There More Women at the Top?

Corporations and the media are abuzz about the underrepresentation of women in senior leadership. This public conversation follows a narrative focused on unconscious bias. In a provocative presentation, Rob uses applied research into the extent of gender bias versus real gender differences in leadership behavior to challenge the popular narrative. Drawn from seven different organizations on three continents, the findings show growing evidence of bias in favor of women leaders. However, they also reveal that women tend to be perceived as tactical doers more than strategic thinkers. This perception can be traced to a silent conspiracy among managers, HR, and women themselves where the career trajectories of high potential women contain fewer broadening experiences associated with developing a wider organizational perspective and strategic enterprise leadership. A case is made for focusing on career paths and breadth of experience, especially in commercial roles, for more women to succeed as leaders.

60 min Workshop

How and Why the Leadership Industry is Failing

In the last 20 years, annual spending on leadership development has doubled from $7B USD to $14B USD. Over the same period, public confidence in our leaders has dropped to an all-time low and most corporations fear they will not have the leadership talent they need to compete in the global economy. This workshop takes HR and Talent Management professionals through six common problems that routinely undermine the good intentions behind leadership coaching, training, and development interventions. Participants will leave the session with concrete action steps they can take to improve the impact of their leadership development efforts, ranging from big picture thought leadership in their organizations to specific, proven techniques and tactics.

60 min Keynote

Improving Executive Selection

Understand how what you seek in a candidate can spell the difference between a successful and unsuccessful executive appointment. Reviewing the last 20 years of “black box” selection at the top, and then a study of more than 300 C-level to VP-level hiring decisions, Rob shows that a surprising number of executive-selection decisions are based on circumstantial factors that have little bearing on the requirements of the role or the adequacy of the candidate. Digging deeper, he reveals that most executives are hired for hard skills when soft skills play a more decisive role in the success of the hired executive. Presenting eight data-based principles for choosing leaders more wisely, he provides a how-to for avoiding bad selections by considering both hard and soft skills.

60 min Keynote

The Root Causes of Executive Derailment

The media love stories about spectacular business blunders by big personalities. Unfortunately, these tales tend to be presented as "of interest to the public" rather than "in the public interest". Tracing 40 years of research into how successful executives run aground, Rob reveals a large and consistent body of findings that holds up across organizations, industries, cultures, and eras, as well as the gender and age range of the fallen. The findings point to two root causes of executive derailment: failure to adapt to change and troubled relationships. He concludes with solutions for minimizing the rate of executive failure through better selection, development, and management of upward transitions.

60 min Keynote

Leadership: The Good, the Bad, and the Reality

There is no shortage of opinion and expensive advice about how to develop managers into leaders. But most of what is offered as best practice today is anecdotal, faddish, and anything but data-based. Rob cuts through the hype and wrong-headed advice with a clear definition of leadership as the ability to influence people to set aside selfish interests and cooperate with others. He explores how to recognize and measure effective leadership, and how to identify younger managers with leadership potential. He shows how to develop true leaders by creating a culture that supports ongoing learning, rewards engaging employees to get results, and is inspired by role models at the top who put performance before politics. With a mix of intriguing theory, powerful data, and real-life corporate success stories, this provocative presentation turns conventional wisdom on its head—and helps you think straight about building a strong leadership culture.

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Kaiser Leadership Solutions

1903-G Ashwood Ct.
Greensboro, NC, USA 27455

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