Informational vs Transformational Approach to Development

September 26, 2011 - Mac Lake - Leadership Development

Years ago when I used to lead teacher-training sessions the first principle I would drive into their thinking was, “Teaching isn’t talking, listening isn’t learning.”  We make a fatal mistake in leadership development when our only approach to development is dumping a bunch of information on learners.  Dumping information doesn’t necessarily equate to transformation.  Yet many organizations use an informational rather than a transformational approach to developing leaders. Here are some of the big differences between the two.

  • Informational tells the learner about principles they need to know.  Transformational teaches people to behave in new ways by challenging them to put principles into practice.
  • Informational dumps knowledge.  Transformational develops competencies
  • Informational is one-way communication. Transformational is a two-way dialogue
  • Informational uses the science of teaching.  Transformational uses the art of facilitation
  • Informational follows a linear pathway.  Transformational customizes learning based on the learners present situation and needs
  • Informational the instructor uses a structured, highly controlled lesson plan.  Transformational the instructor allows freedom and flexibility in the lesson plan
  • Informational puts a priority on content.  Transformational puts priority on behavioral change

Organizations invest hours upon hours in leadership development.  Make sure your investment is producing the transformation you desire.

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Mac Lake


My passion is multiplying multipliers

3 responses to Informational vs Transformational Approach to Development

  1. Mac,

    this is outstanding!

    This blog puts into flesh some of my thoughts on leadership development. I’m going to share this with my team.

  2. My co-worker recommended this site from a post he read the other day. I’m glad she did! Thanks!

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