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transformation from caterpiller to monarch butterflyTransformational Leadership: skills for leaders and managers

Helen Caton Hughes, and Bob Hughes, the Forton Group Founders are currently co-writing a book to support leaders and managers develop their skills and achieve transformational leadership.

We're passionate about the possibility of better leadership, better organisations and better lives. We'll offer readers practical steps for good leadership around the world.

What do we mean by 'transformational' leadership?

This isn't just about change - making things better, faster, cheaper; using fewer people or improving systems and processes.  This is about far reaching change externally and those lightbulb moments internally. Transformational experiences are those after which some things are never the same again.

Three key developmental areas to succeed at transformational leadership:

  1. Leadership skills - knowing what today's 'leadership' is - and having the confidence to put these skills into practice
  2. Coaching skills - because transformational leaders really engage with their staff, colleagues and wider stakeholders
  3. Communications skills - leaders know what they want to communicate and get it across effectively

Equation: the 4 Ps of Transformational Leadership

While we were collating the research for this book, we found that the focus of many authors' attention was on change and performance.  Both are important areas, after all, they're key tasks for leaders. Two interesting equations cover these topics:

Performance = Potential - Interference (Gallwey)

D x V x F > R Dissatisfaction (with current situation) x Vision x First Steps needs to be GREATER THAN Resistance to Change (Beckhard, Harris)

The Transformational Leadership EquationTM: L = p1 + p2 + (P3 x p4)

Where L is Leadership and

  • P1 is Possibility
  • P2 is Performance
  • P3 is People - multipled by  - P4 Potential

Most leadership development stops at the performance and ignores the need for leadership vision and direction; for engaging people and bringing out everyone's potential. 

When you've got all the elements of the equation - then you've really got transformation.

What kinds of impacts will this book have?

Better leadership

  • Stepping up to responsibility
  • Achieving far reaching change
  • Expand your influence and negotiation skills
  • Deal effectively with risk
  • Improve your decision-making
  • Improve your strategic thinking

Better working relationships

  • Be more effective in meetings
  • Build better, stronger, more successful  teams
  • Reduce/ manage conflict
  • Improved conflict resolution

Better communications

  • Getting your messages across effectively
  • Understand what's different about today's communications
  • Using 21st century communication tools well

Better coach

  • Why a coaching style of leadership is the most effective
  • Improve your listening skills
  • More effective questions
  • Listen more/talk less
  • More supportive of others
  • Achieve sustained improvements

Better self-management

  • Manage time & projects
  • Manage upwards with confidence
  • Overcome barriers and obstacles
  • Your career direction
  • Being even better at something I’m already good at
  • Deal with downward spiral

Book?  Or "Interactive Reading Experience"?

We're taking our experience - and the independent evidence - from more than ten years work of developing leaders and distilling it into an interactive reading experience.

What do we mean by that?

Yes, we're writing a 'book' in the traditional sense - with paper, words on a page and everything you'd expect.  What we're also doing is creating an interactive digital version too - so that you can click on the links we'll provide and go look things up.

That way, the book isn't too heavy - and you'll have access to additional resources at no extra cost.

So, what's the publishing timetable?

Well....  Author Douglas Adams was notorious for missing his publishing deadlines.  Even during the production of the radio version of his most famous series 'Hitch-hikers' Guide to the Galaxy' he was regularly pushing against the recording deadlines. 

He said "I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by."

What we know from successful project management is that you let complex projects evolve and then, when the scope and boundaries are clear, the deadline also evolves.  If you try and shoe-horn a project into a deadline too early, you create additional, and often unecessary costs and strains on the system.

so watch this space...

We'll also use this page to share any interesting insights along the way.

August Update

A huge thanks to Adina, one of our reviewing "team" - who pointed out the importance of having an overview of the book.  This was a wonderful insight - based on her own experience - for which we're really grateful.  Bob and I invested a couple of hours in really getting a handle on the big picture - which has meant sorting the content into chapters SO much easier. 

get in touch to be a book reviewerSo we'll use this page to keep you up to date with progress.  And if you'd like to be a reviewer, then contact us and we'll share the early proofs with you for your input and comments.