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  • Writer's pictureMichael Soderling

Leadership Development: "This is the key to so many things."

Updated: Sep 18, 2023

These were the words of a CEO when I asked him to assess a new leadership development method that I have created.

Allow me to briefly provide some background: When working with management team development, I need to gather information on the team to be able to tailor my delivery. To that end, I have acquired licences in several methods for data collection. However, despite my having access to all the relevant tools available on the market, over time it has become evident to me that some important data isn’t being captured by these tools. It is possible to acquire that data by way of interviews but then we get a new problem since interviews are rather costly.

Until now, I have applied a decent compromise: On beforehand it is impossible for me to know under what specific circumstances a certain management team is working. But I do know in which domains those circumstances are to be found (see my free guide: Organisational Development: Unleash the potential for improvement). So when I meet the management team, I initiate discussions in which the circumstances reveal themselves. Once identified, me and the team members are able to work with them.

However, for several years I have been thinking that if the missing data was accessible on beforehand, efficiency in the service I provide would increase. Eventually I arrived at the conclusion that if the mountain will not come to Mohammed, then Mohammed must go to the mountain.

Thus, I have created a new survey. The development process has been a continuous loop of several clients assessing different versions and my fine-tuning the concept. Today I am on the twelfth version of the survey, and just last week it was used for the first time in an actual assignment and to my satisfaction it came through very well. Also, since the survey is designed to be a complement to my other tools I have been able to keep it brief. I notice that the average time for completion is five minutes, which is icing on the cake.

However, this is just the start. Early on I realised that I need to design variations of the survey, meeting the different circumstances pertaining to the private sector, public sector and as well as to NGO’s.

Furthermore, when getting feedback from my clients during the development of the survey, it struck me that it can be used in a broader scope. When you feel your organisation has untapped potential for improvement, then we should implement a version adapted for just this purpose.

The CEO who felt that the survey was the key to so many things based his assessment on his close insight into two dysfunctional organisations. He said “What the survey measures relates perfectly to those companies."

The survey is available in English and Swedish and if you want to know more about it and how it can be applied, just click here and let’s set up a physical or virtual meeting.


If you missed last week’s post where I presented my new free guide: How to ensure return on your investment in organisational and leadership development, click here.


The clients who reach out to me are managing directors, management teams, and executives who want to realise the potential in their organisations and accomplish extraordinary results. They reach out to me because of my ability to transform individuals, teams, and organisations.

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