Syllabus for the 18 Module – 36 Hour Program


Episode 1 – Welcome to the PROFESSION of Leadership Development

  • Leadership definitions, philosophies, and beliefs – from the GAPLD Community.
  • What leadership IS and IS NOT.
  • The growing market demand and societal need for Building Better Leaders. 
  • The art and science of Leadership Development (LD) – Beyond Executive Coaching. 
  • Why many other LD Programs fail, and What Constitutes PROFFESSIONAL LD.
  • Common mistakes in Leadership Development (LD).
  • LD at every Level: the GAPLD Inside-Out Model.
  • Growing to “Level 4”: Transcendent Leadership. 
  • Character and Commitment comes First; followed by differing Leadership Competencies. appropriate to every Level in the Individual’s Leadership Journey
  • Why Character and Values Development trump Personality/Psychometric Assessments.
  • Your Transition from Coach or Consultant to PROFESSIONAL Leadership Developer (e.g., attaining the added designation of C.P.L.D.).
  • Your Commitment to Continuous Education and Professionalism.

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Readings on “What IS Leadership Development?”
  • Overview of the Leadership Industry. 
  • Summary Lists of separate Leadership Competencies at every Level of Executive Growth.
  • Several Articles on “Why Most Leadership Training Programs Fail” and Other LD Do’s and Don’ts.
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 2: Added Leadership Foundations

  • Introduction to the Leadership Effectiveness Evaluation (The L.E.E.)
  • The Work of Leaders
  • More on Different Challenges and Skills Required for Each Stage of Leadership Growth 
  • Added Research and Discussion on the Best and Worst Traits of Leaders  
  • Working with Leadership Transitions 
  • Working with Leaders on their “Inner Game” and Mental Health

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Sample L.E.E. Documents
  • More Background on the Leadership Industry. 
  • Summary Materials on Vision, Alignment, and Execution Challenges in Leadership
  • Summary Lists of separate Leadership Competencies at every Level of Executive Growth.
  • Several Articles on “Why Most Leadership Training Programs Fail” and Other LD Do’s and Don’ts.
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 3: The Foundation of Leadership Character and Commitment 

  • Working with Mindsets – both Open and Closed.
  • Coaching to Step Up: A Leader’s Self-Contract before Launching the Journey and “Turning Pro”
  • Conversations and Exercises to Develop Thoughts, Words, Actions, and Habits during ongoing Development of Leadership Character.
  • Introduction to the LCIA and Other Models and Methods of Assessing Leadership Character; beyond all other Psychometrics. 
  • Added Techniques in Coaching for Character Development.
  • Summary: Why Character Matters. 

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Various Readings from The Ivey School of Business on “Leadership Character”.
  • Sample copies of a “Leadership Self-Contract and Declaration of Commitment”.
  • Tools and Exercises to Develop and Strengthen Leadership Character (various). 
  • Your Leadership Character Insight Assessment, The VIA Character Assessment, and Other Instruments and Frameworks for Character Development of Leaders.
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 4 – Learning, Teaching, Presenting, and Facilitating Skills 

  • Effective Instruction and Pedagogy – Key Techniques and Processes.
  • The Science of Human Learning and Making It Stick.
  • Numerous Tips, Tools, and Techniques for Making Professional Presentations.
  • The Power of Story Telling.
  • The Art of Effective Facilitation in Leadership Development.

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Several Articles and Summaries on Neuroscience and the Educational Psychology of Learning.
  • Several Articles, References, and Summaries on the Power of Making and Changing Habits.
  • Instructional Tip Sheets, Checklists, and Other Hand-outs – On Making Effective Presentations, Story Telling, Lesson Planning, Classroom Management, etc. 
  • A Checklist of Instructional/Presentation Do’s and Don’ts. 
  • Tip Sheets and Tricks of the Trade for Professional Facilitators.
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 5 – Tools for Development of Leadership Self-Awareness and Executive Presence


  • Strength Finding.
  • Personality, Multiple Intelligences, and Other Tools for Leadership Self-Awareness.
  • Development of Personalized Mission, Vision, and Core Values for Leadership Clients.
  • Resilience for Leaders.
  • Developing Executive Presence and Self-Branding

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

    • Strength Finding Tools, References, and various Background Readings.
    • Background work by Gardiner (Multiple Intelligence), Kolb (Learning Styles), Adaptive and Practical Intelligences, Herman (Visual Intelligence), etc.
    • Numerous Resilience Checklists, Hand Outs, and Fact Sheets to Guide future Leadership Clients.
    • Tools for the design of a Leader’s Personal Mission, Vision and Values Statements; and making Life Strategies and Individual Life Plans for Leaders. 
  • Executive Presence and Awareness of Executive Self-Branding/Image
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 6 – Tools for Managing Emotions and Enhancing Social/Political Intelligence

  • Various Models of Emotional Intelligence and Development of Leadership EQ (Emotional Quotient)
  • Emotional Self-Awareness, Managing Hot Buttons, and Other Emotional Triggers
  • Development of Social Intelligence and How to Read and Manage the Emotions of Others
  • Employee Motivation
  • Management of Leadership Political Intelligence (PQ) and How to Minimize Silos, Cliques, Gossip, Other Negative Office Politics
  • Harnessing the Power of Leadership Intuition

Plus, Other Tools and Readings:

  • Background references and material from Daniel Goleman, Bradbury and Greaves, Jo Owen, and others on EQ, PQ, SQ, Likeability, etc. 
  • Cross-referencing to EQi-2.0 and other EQ psychometrics and diagnostic tools.
  • Numerous tools on expansion of Emotional Vocabulary, Emotional Analysis, Emotional Self-Regulation, etc. 
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 7 – Tools for Improving Leadership Self-Organization

  • Goal Setting
  • Self Organizational Skills and Executive Work Planning
  • Executive Time Management Skills
  • Changing Habits
  • Understanding and Self-Management of Positive Psychology

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Eisenhower Matrix, Summary Hand-outs, and Tools from “Time Smart” (Whilans), David Allan, Brian Tracey (“Eat that Frog”), Laiken, etc.
  • Numerous Tools, Templates, etc. to Assist with Executive Goal Setting
  • Background Readings, Habits, Tools on Changing Habits
  • Background Hand-out Summaries, Exercises, and Tools on Positive Psychology (e.g., from Martin Seligman and many others) 
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 8 – Improved Thinking and Decision-Making Skills of Leaders

  • The Science of Executive Cognition – How to Elevate Executive Thinking Skills
  • Executive Creativity
  • Cognitive Bias and Other Distortions that Impair Effective Decision-Making
  • Tools and Methods to Enhance Decision Analysis

Plus, Tools and Readings:

  • Various tools, summaries, references on Cognitive Biases, Cognitive Distortions, and other Thinking Skills (from Debono, Ziglar, Burns, etc.). 
  • Extensive handouts/tools/summaries on Executive Decision-making Skills.
  • Follow up with materials/handouts on Critical Thinking Skills and tips – including new material from Bergstrom and West (just published) on “Calling Bullshit.” 
  • Templates, Tools, and other Hand-Outs on How to Stimulate Ideation, Design Thinking, and Executive Creativity. 
  • Added Reading Lists

Episode 9- Tools for Leadership Communications and Conflict Management


  • “Mini-Bootcamps” on Fundamental Speech Acts and Executive Communications.
  • Conflict Management, “Conflict Judo”, and Holding Crucial Conversations.
  • Communications Essentials and Application of the Most Effective, Non-Violent Techniques of Communications (Re-framing, Assertiveness Skills and Practices, Mediation Techniques, etc.).
  • Cross-Cultural Communications and “Gender Physics”.

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Over 15 + different 1-2-page worksheets for self-reflection and added practice (on communications fundamentals, conflict management, influence, various team dynamics/trust building tools gender and cross-cultural communications, non-verbal communications, etc.). 
  • Background Hand Outs and Tips on Exercising Influence, and Holding Persuasive Conversations
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 10 – Tools for Managing Teams and Effective Followership

    • Team Selection and Dynamics – Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing
    • Team Role Clarity and Effective Processes for Shared Collaboration
    • Delegation Skills 
  • Team Building and Team Dysfunctions
  • The Science of Building and Keeping Trust
  • The Science of Influence, Persuasion, Soft Power, and Influence without Authority.
  • Other Team Secrets
  • Courageous Followership and Managing Up.

PLUS, Tools and Readings

  • Survey Tools, Templates, Sample Codes or Practice, and various Instruments to Measure Team Health and Integrated Performance
  • Several LD guidelines and coaching templates on Employee Alignment and Role Clarity
  • LD handouts and tip sheets from Kellerman (and many others) on Effective Followership.
  • Background Research and Tools on the Science of Influence
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 11 – Tools for Managing Accountability and Team Performance


  • LD Tools to Support One-on-One Coaching and Feedback of Leaders to their Employees – One of the Leader’s Most Tasks
  • Numerous Tools and Hand Outs to Support Effective Meeting Management and the Meeting Rhythms of Leadership.
  • Performance Management, Executive Execution, and Managing Accountability.
  • Delivering Consequences as Part of the Accountability Cycle – Both in Giving Appreciation and When Holding Difficult Conversations


Plus, Added Tools and Readings:

  • Separate handout package, assessment tools and templates on Effective Meeting Management as “The Arena of Leadership”.
  • Added Hand-Outs, Checklists, etc. on Giving Effective Feedback and Conducting One-on-One Coaching Sessions
  • Tools and Templates for Leaders on Delivering Accountability, Consequences, and Alternative Methods for Expressing Team Appreciation

Episode 12 –Tools and Techniques for Leading Entire Organizations – through Development of Culture, Strategy, and Risk Assessment/Mitigation


  • Corporate Culture Building
  • Strategies/LD Supports for Optimal Employee Engagement.
  • Strategic Thinking Skills
  • Strategic Planning.
  • Strategic Implementation – from Strategy to Operations to Performance Management, etc.
  • Risk Management for Leaders – Risk Assessment and Risk Mitigation Planning
  • Crisis Management

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Over 10 x 1-2-page Handouts/Worksheets to work with Leaders on Deliberative Cultural Building, Cultural Change Management, Re-organizational Do’s and Don’ts, Tribal Leadership, etc. (as taken from Drucker, Kotter, Coyle, and others).
  • Several templates, exercises, checklists, assessment tools, and other materials on Strategic Thinking Skills. 
  • Overview Summaries and Facilitation Guidelines on over 6 + different Models/Methods for Strategic Planning (SWOT + KRA’s, Blue Ocean, Roger Martin Model, 5-Forces/Porter Model, PESTEL Analysis, Scenario Planning, etc.). 
  • Sample methodologies and tools for development of Strategic Risk Registers, Heat Maps, Risk Mitigation Plans, Crisis/Contingency/Continuity Plans, Red Teaming Exercises, etc.
  • Added Reading List.


Episode 13 – Added Tools for Leading Entire Organizations through Succession Planning, Good Governance, and Added Stakeholder Engagement


  • Organizational Succession Planning – Role of LD in Mapping, Capacity Building, etc. 
  • Tools for Effective Stakeholder/Community Engagement.
  • Introduction to Good Governance and Optimum Interactions between Boards and Leaders. 

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Templates, Tools, Structural Options, Sample LD Work Plans, etc. on corporate Succession Planning, Leadership Onboarding, Stay Interviewing techniques, and other in-house systems to optimize talent development. 
  • 8 different tools and templates on stakeholder mapping, collaboration programs, strategic alliance building, co-opetition strategies, and stakeholder communication strategies and planning.
  • Background Governance Principles from ICD, Carver, etc. – for both corporate and non-profit Boards; sample Governance Manuals, sample Board Governance Orientation Programs, etc.
  • Added Reading Lists. 

Episode 14 – Transcendent Leadership

  • Psychological Models/Theories of Individual Transcendence.
  • Moral Decision Making and the Moral Manifesto
  • Background on CSR Programs, ESG Investment Principles, and Stakeholder Capitalism.
  • Codes, Principles, and Samples of Ethical and Moral Leadership in Action.
  • Ecological Footprints, Green Business Operations, and Concepts of “Conscious Capitalism”.
  • Models and Methods for Design, Build and Operations of B-Corps, Social Enterprise, Affinity Social Marketing, etc. 

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Sample “How To” Manuals and Checklists on Design and Build of CSR, ESG, and Social Enterprise Ventures and the expansion/establishment of Corporate Social and Environmental Responsibilities
  • Background Reading Summaries from Etzel (“The Ethical Leader and Why Doing the Right Thing Can Be Key to Competitive Advantage”) and Kaufman, Mackey, Sisoda, Schaub, Parish, etc. (on “Conscious Business”, “Conscious Capitalism”, “Making Good”, etc.). 
  • Sharing the GAPLD Statement of Ethics and our “Responsibility Manifesto”.
  • Background Readings on Transcendence and Self Actualization (from Kaufman, Maslow, Novogratz, Wheatley, etc.
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 15 – Introductions to the Fundamentals of Coaching

  • Importance of Clarity Seeking
  • Key Distinctions between Coaching and Mentoring
  • Power of Curiosity and Asking the Right Questions
  • Common Mistakes Coaches Make
  • Going Wide, Going Deep, Going Slow
  • Establishing Action Steps and a Coach/Coachee Accountability Program

PLUS, Other Tools and Readings:

  • Establishing an Onboarding Coaching Binder with Executive Clients
  • Coaching Tips and Fundamental Reminders
  • Fundamentals of the G.R.O.W. Model and Establishing a Regular Coaching Rhythm with Clients
  • Hand Outs on the Coach Approach, and Why It Works
  • Templates and Other Guidelines on Setting Coaching Goals for Clients – Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly, etc.
  • Added Reading List.

Episode 16 – The Leadership Coaching Process – Putting It Altogether 

  • Added Role Plays, Triggers, and Other Exercises on spotting Leadership Pain Points and Coaching through various Executive Leadership Challenges and Scenarios.
  • Coaching for development of better Leadership Habits.
  • Refresher of previous PBCA and ICF Coaching Programs, but with alternative craftsmanship in coaching from a Leadership Development perspective (e.g., working with the LEE, Character/Commitment Coaching, etc.). 

Other Tools and Readings:

  • Refresh of various handouts and checklists on Coaching Fundamentals, but with an LD focus.
  • Added tips, techniques, summaries, etc. on the special techniques, methods, rhythms, etc. of Executive Coaching.
  • Added Reding List.

Episode 17 – FIP’s, Mastermind Groups, and Experiential Learning to Build Better Leaders 

  • Feedback Intensive Programs (FIP’s) and how to Design and Use 360 Reviews Carefully.
  • Design and Establishment of In-house Mentoring and Peer-to-Peer Coaching Programs, and professionally running them inside your Leadership Client organizations. 
  • Executive Level Mastermind Groups – options and intricacies in putting them together.
  • Gaming and Simulations in Leadership Development.
  • Experiential Learning in Leadership Development – Stretch Assignments, “Crucible Experiences”, Lessons Learned Reviews/Retrospectives, and multi-disciplinary Project Management experience to strengthen Leadership Character and build higher-level Leadership Skills. 

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Sample FIP and Pulse Surveys, Feedback Reporting on FIP Surveys, etc. 
  • Hand-outs and Tip Sheets on Mentoring vs. Coaching, Effective Mentoring Techniques, Mentor and Mentee Screening Selection and Match-making Processes, etc.
  • Few-To-Many Coaching and Mastermind Models for Tapping into Collective Wisdom of Groups.
  • “How To” Manuals and Tip Sheets on creation of various optional Group Programs – from Business Unit Quality Circles to elevated Strategic Thinking Panels, to Innovation Council, Strategic Advisory Boards, and other Task Forces. 
  • Reference List and Referrals to various Leadership Gaming and Other Simulation Tools.
  • Extensive background Summaries on how to intentionally design and plan Experiential Leadership and Rotations for organizational Talent Development.
  • Summary slides, tips sheets, readings on PMBOK (The Project Management Book of Knowledge) and templates for becoming an effective PM.
  • Added Reading Lists.

Episode 18 – Running Your LD Consulting Business or Managing Your Own In-House/Corporate “Leadership Engine” 

  • Intake, Design and Project Management of Client-sponsored Leadership Development Programs and various LD Services and Projects.
  • Marketing and Niche Finding in Your Future LD Practice
  • Selling Systems to Grow your LD Expertise.
  • Working with your C-Suite and/or Board to Design, Launch and Sustain your In-House Leadership Academy and various forms of Corporate “Leadership Engines”.
  • Measuring the Impact and Effectiveness of your Leadership Development Efforts.
  • GAPLD Statement of Professional Ethics
  • Ethical Role Plays and Scenario Discussions.
  • Follow Up Description of the Continuing Education Program Requirements and Planning Your CEU’s and Mentor Networking over the next 12 months.
  • Overview and Reminders of Other GAPLD After Care and Support Systems for new Members
  • Added Introduction and Overview of the Exclusive GAPLD Library
  • Your NEW Graduation Certificate and Diploma as a CERTIFIED PROFESSIONAL LEADERSHIP DEVELOPER!

PLUS, Tools and Readings:

  • Guidelines and Tools for LD Evaluation and Impact Assessment.
  • Sample Contracts and Operating Systems to Run Your LD Business. 
  • LD Marketing and Selling Systems – Added templates, summary readings, and checklists for Client Relationship Management (CRM Planning).
  • Handout Summaries on Various Models of In-House “Talent Engines” and the Design of In-House Leadership Academies.
  • Guidelines and Tools for LD Evaluation and Impact Assessment.
  • GAPLD Ethics Statement (to be signed) and Professional Commitments
  • Background on the Ongoing CEU Program and the Work of Our Professional Registrar
  • Added Readings and Hand Outs on Ethical Challenges 
  • Delivery of Personalized/Protected Passwords and Entry to Other GAPLD Digital Tools 
  • Added Reading List.

As A First Step In Joining Our Profession, Send Us A Note

As a first step, GAPLD requires potential candidates to submit a personal Biography and Letter of Application explaining his/her background, leadership experiences, and proof of pre-qualifying credentials from other professional certifications or background university degrees with training in leadership studies.