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The Leadership Podcast

The Leadership Podcast

Why do we do this?

We interview great leaders, review the books they read, and speak with highly influential authors who study them.

How we do this?

#1 We interview great leaders.
#2 We review the books great leaders read and write.
#3 We have fun!

Sep 4, 2016

We’re giving this episode out to the world at large today as an example of future Mastermind episodes.  In the future, only those who subscribe to our email list will get access to the mastermind episodes… so please take the time to sign up on our website at –

Our guest, Mike Figliuolo – Managing Director of thoughtLEADERS LLC and Founder at Executive Insight 16 discusses the elusive ROI of leadership training.


Key Takeaways

[2:20] What’s one of the biggest shortcomings you see in leadership development?  People have to invest in themselves.

[3:00] Is this an OD issue?  It’s about setting expectations.

[6:20] Do most leaders try to grow their organization by growing their people? 

[7:55] The ROI of leadership training.  Effective organizations establish a “standard,” and apply it to real-world problems and opportunities.

[9:30] Four levels of evaluating training: Reaction, Learning, Behavior and Results.  Look for tangible indicators/behaviors. 

[11:00] Look for specific quantitative measurements – versus “false measurement dynamic.”

[13:50] What don’t people invest?  Is there a performance gap?  If you were driving home and you had a flat tire, would you get it fixed?  Of course!  Why would you run with things that are broken?  What’s the opportunity cost?

[15:45] Good options for stretching your people?  Are mistakes OK?

[21:00] Game theory – guessing if I do this you will do that… and if I do that, you will do this…

[22:20] Key question when developing your team: What this a good use of your day?

[25:00] Executive Insight 16 – Where Leaders Learn from Leaders

[27:30] What to expect from the event in NYC? 

[32:00] What will be learned from this forum?


Quotable Quotes

  • "There is no leadership dilemma. Just reality.” 
  • “The less power you have the more strategic you need to be.”
  • “Create space for yourself mentally to think strategically.”


Books & Events Mentioned or Referenced on the Show

Leadership Development – A Profound Disconnect?

The Elegant Pitch: Create a Compelling Recommendation, Build Broad Support, and Get it Approved

One Piece of Paper: The Simple Approach to Powerful, Personal Leadership

Lead Inside the Box: How Smart Leaders Guide Their Teams to Exceptional Results

The Leadership Podcast - Episode 3 - Mike Figliuolo – A Thought Leader on Thought Leaders



Mike Figliuolo is the founder and managing director of thoughtLEADERS, LLC, a professional services firm specializing in leadership development. He is the author of One Piece of Paper: The Simple Approach to Powerful, Personal Leadership and is a nationally recognized speaker and blogger. Before founding his own company, he was a consultant at McKinsey & Co., and an executive at Capital One and Scotts Miracle-Gro.