Leadership training is essential for current and future leaders, managers, or supervisors. These pieces of training offer new insights and perspectives to help you succeed. However, some of these training programs are mundane and have less than an amazing impact that lacks deliverables to produce lasting change. Mary Belden-McGrath, the Chief Relationship Officer of Driven Leadership, was motivated to make a difference in the training programs and have people walk away ready to create the change they are looking for immediately.
Mary is a veteran in the industry with over two decades of experience working in the field of leadership and development. She has trained and developed leaders globally from the Fortune 100 to small organizations. Mary has written the book, “Someday Is Now” and is an exceptional keynote speaker on topics of leadership and personality development. Mary is the co-founder of Driven Leadership and uses her expertise in the workplace as a top sales performer, business owner, a certified master trainer in leadership skills. She has also sat on the board of non-profit organizations.
Driven Leadership is a trusted leadership development partner for SMMEs throughout North America. For more than a decade, Driven Leadership has been helping these companies develop new leadership skills while enabling them to build strong and healthy team cultures.
In our recent encounter with Mary Belden-McGrath, she walks us through the journey of Driven Leadership and how the company’s programs helped the clients improve their culture and drive better results.
It’s been a long challenging and rewarding ride. Driven Leadership began in 2010 with a vision, a lot of networking, cold calling, and grit, with only a couple of key contracts in place. We hit the ground running with a belief and passion for what we could provide as well as a fear of how the heck are we going to do this. Courage isn’t the absence of fear… it’s the ability to do it afraid, and that’s what we did. The belief was greater than the fear and adversity. During our first year in business, I ran into severe health challenges and it was a struggle to work for several years. As I started getting healthy, my focus was on restructuring the organization to feature some of the most powerful, processed-based experiential training out there.
Our flagship product, BOLD: Advanced Leadership has been groundbreaking. Mixing personal breakthrough with business application in a hard-hitting process-based 2.5-day whirlwind. People who are truly looking to be challenged and grow are never disappointed. This led to several other immersive style training and process-based organizational development programs such as our management academy.
Driven Leadership’s portfolio includes immersive 2.5-day programs – BOLD: Advanced Leadership, Forge: Team Execution, The Advantage: Engaged Communication. Organizational Development Programs 4-8hr programs – Conflict Management using the TKI Conflict Assessment Tool, Communication using DISC and Innermetrix ADVanced Insights, Organizational Engagement, Leadership For Managers. We also offer a full array of HR Consulting Services.
Most recently we have seen amazing results from our Leadership For Managers Program. This is a 12-week online course that brings management development to a whole new level. It covers a range of topics from broader skills such as emotional intelligence and enhanced communication to specific topics such as giving/receiving feedback and delegation. Participants walk away with the ability to problem-solve and respond to the challenges of management at a completely different level.
Our big difference maker is the process-based experiential nature of our programs. People take away so much more because they get to not only learn but feel the material and how to apply it. It’s like learning to swim, if all we did was show a PowerPoint on swimming it wouldn’t be that impactful. Instead, we drop you into the deep end and coach you while you are in the situation. We don’t let you drown and we do make sure you experience success before you leave the water.
We start from the top down in expanding each leader’s ability to perform, make decisions, and build healthy relationships and cultures. The result is more productivity with a happier and more engaged workforce.
I think most people like to assume that because we teach leadership development we have it all figured out, well we don’t. We make mistakes just like every other company. One of the biggest has been hiring based on qualifications versus a clear cultural fit. We teach people how to do this right, but have overlooked it internally from time to time. Now we have processes in place to make sure that they not only are great facilitators but excellent cultural fits as well.
When your training is different from everyone else it’s a double-edged sword. It’s our biggest contributor to long-lasting client relationships and it is also often a deterrent to new clients as they have never experienced anything like what we do. However, being different and having great customer relations is what sets us apart.
Great customer service, caring for the outcomes of the client, believing and living what we teach, and having training that can be measured to create lasting outcomes.
This year we are being recognized in several publications, most recently we were awarded HR Tech Outlooks Top 20 Leadership Development Training/Coaching Companies of 2022. Our Virtual Management academy will be coming online towards the end of the year. We are excited to be a part of the up-and-coming and look forward to the journey ahead!