What is Leadership Training?

Dana Hinders
Dana Hinders

While it's true some people appear to be natural-born leaders, others need a bit of help to learn how to effectively manage a group. Leadership training is a type of business training that aims to help people develop the skills they need to be able to supervise those who are working beneath them. Leadership training may be provided as part of a general business curriculum or as a separate area of study. Upon completion of their leadership development training, students may be awarded a certificate, degree, or diploma.

A small number of programs are devoted exclusively to helping female managers become more effective at their jobs.
A small number of programs are devoted exclusively to helping female managers become more effective at their jobs.

The content of a leadership training class can vary widely. Some of the common topics covered in leadership training include team building, presentation skills, and motivating a group that includes people with varying personality types. Dealing with employees who don't perform up to task and handling difficult customers are examples of challenges that may be addressed through role playing exercises. Depending upon the course provider, public speaking, overcoming stage fright, and basic sales training may also be included under the general umbrella of leadership development.

Leadership training helps to develop skills needed to supervise others.
Leadership training helps to develop skills needed to supervise others.

The military is often cited by civilians as an example of the importance of effective leadership. While the modern workplace can never replicate the rigid environment of an Army boot camp, it's becoming increasingly popular for corporate managers to seek out leadership training provided by former military officials. Studies examining the effectiveness of military management and leadership styles in a non-military environment have had mixed results, but there are many people who say this type of leadership training offers benefits that are hard to find elsewhere.

Most leadership training classes are open to both men and women, although a small number of programs are devoted exclusively to helping female managers become more effective at their jobs. These types of classes focus on the many subtle ways in which men and women tend to differ in their management styles. For example, many women find they are less authoritative than male managers during a conflict because they prefer a more cooperative approach to resolving an issue. However, women also tend to be more empathetic than men, which can be an asset when dealing with a diverse group of employees.

While the best type of leadership training is a seminar or class that allows for interaction with others, people interested in leadership development may also benefit from reading books on the subject. Books with case studies covering various leadership dilemmas can provide a starting point for thinking about how to apply theories of successful leadership to your own life. Forming a book club to discuss the topic of leadership with other professionals is another great way to enhance your leadership skills without investing large amounts of money in formal classes.

Dana Hinders
Dana Hinders

Dana holds a B.A. in journalism and mass communication from the University of Iowa. She has loved being part of the wiseGEEK team ever since discovering the joys of freelance writing after her son was born. Dana also hones her writing skills by contributing articles to various blogs, as well as creating sales copy and content for e-courses.

You might also Like

Readers Also Love

Discussion Comments


A good leadership seminar should have role play and exercises for people to practice.

I took part in a seminar like this a few years ago. It was great because we didn't just talk about leadership, we got the opportunity to actually practice it. There were many exercises and simulations where individuals were given roles. So we were in groups and each member received a confidential note about who they were. One person was the problem maker, another was the easy-going employee, another was an upset client, and one or two people were the managers or negotiators so to speak.

This way, everyone got ample opportunity to learn leadership and conflict resolution skills. It was one of the most beneficial work related seminars I attended.


I'm interested in receiving leadership training. I'm not a manager but I am sometimes given the job of supervising employees when the manager has to be away. I am doing well but I think I can do better. There was a conflict between two employees last week and I wasn't sure how to deal with it. Leadership is a personality characteristic but a lot of it has to do with experience. One gains insight into the various approaches with experience. But learning a few methods from people who've already been there and done that can be helpful.

I hope I can find a good course about this soon.


I personally don't believe that the military model of leadership is suitable for a civilian work environment. Military personnel are used to that structure from early on in their lives and they know how to function within it. Even then, military personnel can experience problems because of it.

Civilians are not used to the rigid and stern system of the military. I think that such a leadership system in a civilian workplace would backfire and cause more problems in the long run. The best leadership for civilian is a mixture of decisiveness and order, and flexibility and feedback. I believe that employees should respect their leaders and follow orders. But they should also have that comfort level where they can voice concerns and have one to one discussions with their leader. A very rigid leadership structure will intimidate civilian employees and they will be too afraid to speak their mind.

Post your comments
Forgot password?