The KISS model of leadership development

Recruitment companies deal with human potential all the time. Candidate assessment, recruitment processes and other tasks are our daily bread and butter. And because of this, we often lack the time to look inward and evaluate the development of our own employees. We are so focused on making sure that every open position comes to fruition that we can run the risk of not examining who among our workforce can become future leaders, and promoting them within the company.

But leadership development remains a key element that cannot be neglected. We will introduce here the KISS model of leadership development, a model that will help us to manage the potential of our employees in a clear and simple way.

What is the KISS model?

KISS stands for “Keep it Sweet and Simple”. It describes a model according to which any leader, regardless of the size of the company, can generate clear leadership development opportunities for his or her employees.

What does the model consist of? The model consists of four well-defined steps, which we describe below:

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Make it real

The first step will be to involve our employees in the leadership of isolated, but totally real and functional projects for the running of the company. When assigned tasks of responsibility with real practical effects, employees become much more involved with the opportunity to prove their worth with something tangible.

Integrate leadership development into day-to-day business.

It is not necessary to create specific activities or actions to promote leadership development. Being the leader of a company or department yourself, you will have many tasks on the table. Learn to delegate some of them to your most likely employees, and do it with confidence and let them take the reins.

Show yourself the way

In addition to delegating day-to-day tasks, be an example of leadership yourself. In those tasks that you keep under your control, show yourself as a positive leader and pass on to your high potential employees what you know and how you see things. They will learn from you and be molded “in your image” if they see that your procedures work.

Take it one step at a time

Ideally, always start at the bottom, with small tasks that you can increase in intensity and responsibility over time. Test your best employees first in real actions, yes, but with low impact. Allow them to learn from small victories and successes, and gradually give them larger tasks as they complete those already assigned.

Other opportunities to promote leadership development

Here are some concrete examples that will help you develop the leadership skills of your best employees:

  • Be sure to give positive feedback whenever you see signs of leadership in your employees. Value and praise activities they undertake on their own, even the smallest ones (e.g., one employee offering to help another solve a problem).
  • Don’t be the leader of all meetings, allow your employees to lead them in rotating shifts and observe how they play the role.
  • In meetings with customers or outside the company, take the employees with the best potential with you and, over time, let them take over and take control. Show them the way first, and then let them take the reins.
  • If you have an employee with clear leadership potential, let them be in charge of managing small teams.

KISS: easy, simple and “sweet”.. Applying this method to the little day-to-day things will allow your employees to develop and improve their leadership skills so that, when the time comes, you can offer them a promotion or hand over greater responsibilities with the certainty that it will work out well: you will have tested it beforehand.

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