The Best Leadership Training Programs: Comparing Cost and Features

Your leadership and management teams are the cornerstone of your company's success. Whether you're a new recruiter or a CEO, high-quality, executive training is an essential piece of the puzzle. But where do you start? Should you invest in a leadership training program online? With so many options, it can be hard to know where to begin.

Our goal is to provide your team with consistent leadership training for engaged employees - which means you get tenured, executive leadership that will lead your company in the right direction. We've compiled a list of some of the best training programs depending on what's most important to you. Whether the cost is your biggest focus, or you want a breakdown of different features offered, look no further! We've got you covered.

Online Leadership Training Programs

Why Now Is The Best Time To Invest In Leadership Training

Leadership skills are in high demand and short supply. The need for leadership training has never been greater. With more than 50% of executives reporting that they struggle with the demands of their job, it's time to invest in understanding how to lead--now! There is an opportunity right now for organizations to provide leadership development programs and reap the rewards. By investing in developing leaders today, you can significantly increase your future success and profitability. 

Here are six reasons why you should take advantage of this moment:

  1. The need for strong leadership is great. Organizations today are facing greater challenges than ever before, which means it's more important than ever for leaders to step up and meet the challenges head-on. For example, in a recent yearlong study by IBM involving 1,500 CEOs worldwide, 77% reported that they were trying to accomplish more, in less time, with fewer resources. The need for strong leadership has never been greater.
  2. People are willing to embrace change if they know there's a leader in charge who is committed to the goal and will keep them on track. Individuals need direction and clarity from their managers; otherwise they're left wandering around in the dark.
  3. People are always looking for ways to become more valuable, and being a strong leader is how they do it. A recent article by CNBC states that 55% of employees are considering changing jobs. If employees felt valued, they would be much less likely to leave. In order to find value, they're discovering that developing their skills as leaders takes them further than other skills.
  4. Leadership development is cost-effective and profitable for the organization. Research shows that if you develop a leader, you can double your company's profits. There are several reasons why developing leaders is so powerful: 1) People retain more information when they're active; 2) When people work in teams, they produce more and solve problems faster; 3) You can't hire a new leader for anywhere near the cost of developing one throughout their career.
  5. Individuals have a moral obligation to professional development. According to a recent Gallup poll, 80% of employees believe that continuous learning is part of being successful in today's job market. Gallup also found that those employees who felt like their managers were committed to their professional development were twice as likely to report feeling engaged in their work.
  6. The process of becoming a leader teaches you how to manage yourself and know what constitutes good leadership. It's impossible to understand what it's like on the other side without first taking a look at where you are now. Leadership is a mindset, and the best way to begin your journey is by examining yourself first. 

Leadership is a mindset, and the best way to begin your journey is by examining yourself first. #leadershiptraining #leadershipdevelopment 

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The need for strong leadership has never been greater. Are you creating a culture of learning and leadership in your organization? Or are you waiting for the right time to come along?

Choosing The Best Leadership Training

Considerations For Choosing A Leadership Development Program

The tricky part is knowing which leadership program is the best fit for your leadership and management team. There are lots of new trends that are reshaping the way we train our leaders. However, there are a few key factors that help determine what makes successful leadership development program. Should you invest in a program that offers a wide variety of training topics, or focus on the essential skills of good leadership? Is it better to choose a company that charges per individual or one that offers leadership training for all your leaders, company-wide? And you'll also need to consider whether in-person or online training is best for your organization. Is a university-based leadership program a better fit for your company, or will an online program offer consistent leadership development? Although virtual leadership courses are enticing, there are common problems and many pros and cons to online leadership training that much be considered.

Here are some things to think about when choosing a leadership training program:

How long does the program last?

Program length is a factor because if you're going to spend money on leadership training, you want it to be worth it. A short program won't help you learn valuable skills while a very long one will likely get in the way of other responsibilities. Unless attendance isn't an issue or you have other commitments that can be interrupted, most leadership training programs last between two and three days.

What will you learn?

Not all leadership training is the same and there are lots of different examples of leadership training that work. Some courses are more focused on soft skills while others focus more on specific areas of knowledge like management or communication. Others still offer a combination of both. You'll need to find out what is covered in any given program before you sign up for it. 

How much will the program cost?

The price of a program will vary based on factors like the length and reputation of the training company. You can usually find out more about these details through an Internet search. Asking others who have taken similar leadership training is also a way to find out the cost of a program. If you are currently paying for any type of leadership training but are not satisfied with it, it is definitely type to examine the ways you may be wasting your money. This will help guide you toward the right program, and ensure your money is well spent. 

Who will benefit from the program?

Some programs are more general and suitable for a wide range of people while others may be intended for a specific type of leadership role. Some organizations offer special training programs exclusively for their employees so if you're not sure, find out what is available through your company or ask your manager.

Leadership Skills To Consider When Choosing Leadership Training

Important Leadership Skills To Consider

A good leader is someone who has the ability to make decisions quickly and with little input from others. Leadership is also about being able to motivate those who work under you, setting a vision for your team, and getting people to buy into it. While good leaders are highly sought after in all types of organizations, not everyone has the necessary leadership skills.

Important leadership skills include:

Ways In Which Leadership Training Programs Can Help

Leadership training programs will help you learn about what makes a good leader, how to project leadership qualities, and being able to recognize situations where your leadership skills are or aren't working. By attending a leadership training program, you will be able to gain knowledge and skills that will help you throughout your career. You can also meet and interact with other people who are working toward similar goals as you.

Overall, there are many different leadership training programs available for those who want to develop better leaders. By choosing a program that best fits your budget and schedule, as well as having the right amount of content that you can apply to your everyday life, you will be able to gain the leadership skills needed to excel in any industry.

To help you decide, we've done an in-depth comparison of popular leadership programs to narrow down your options!

Leadership Training Programs Available

LinkedIn Learning / Lynda

Cost: $24.99 per person, per month or $300 for a year of training per person


  • Customizable training that offers companies the ability to choose courses for their employers.
  • Access to over 15,000 courses in 7 languages.
  •  60+ new courses released every week.

LinkedIn Learning is an online leadership course to consider. This online leadership program offers training to improve hundreds of skills at every level, from beginner level topics to advanced, executive leadership skills. 

These online leadership training classes are created by professional trainers and experts in leadership development. You can pick up new, practical leadership skills or improve the ones you already have with Lynda's instructional video library.

You can also get courses via mobile apps or desktop software to take them on-the-go and learn at your own pace. The app for mobile devices and the software program lets you access these courses anytime, anywhere: both on your Android device with the free Lynda app and on your computer/laptop.

Go here for an in-depth comparison of LinkedIn Learning vs our A Better Leader platform.

Pryor Learning Solution

Cost: $449 per person for a year of training


  • Access to 5,000+ online courses, with new content, added at no additional charge.
  • Free attendance at any of their 12,000+ live seminars presented in more than 600 cities across the U.S. and Canada.
  • Both live and pre-recorded online courses, webinars, and live seminars for training. 
  • Courses focus on leadership principles such as proper budgeting, team building, effective communication skills, and how to handle disciplinary issues when they arise.

Pryor Learning Solution leadership training is a great option for any company--big or small. Their leadership trainers are experts in the field of continuous learning, with decades of experience and leadership credentials. 

They offer live and online courses to suit your needs and to help you develop all the best management skills. Their custom-blended solutions can be tailored to each individual situation. They are committed to delivering cost-efficient, high-quality leadership training programs that bring measurable results every time.

Pryor Learning Solution leadership training is offered in 4 different formats: on-site, off-site with in-class lessons, online leadership courses, and blended leadership programs combining multiple training methods.

Their team of experts will match you up with strategic leadership training materials that will help you achieve your goals for your organization

Dale Carnegie Training Course

Cost: Based on the number of people who plan to take each course and which courses they plan to take. Sold on an individual basis.


  • Both online and in-person training available.
  • Training courses focus on essential skills such as people skills, presentation, leadership and management, sales, customer service, and organization.
  • 200 offices in 85+ countries.

This leadership course is designed to help people become more confident and effective in their interactions with others by improving skills such as listening, persuading, and dealing with conflict. You will learn how to handle challenging situations with poise and confidence so that you come across as a leader who knows what they’re doing.

The program comes complete with all related materials including e-learning modules, workbooks, and a leadership certificate - no other purchase necessary! Dale Carnegie Training Courses are flexible, so you can choose the number of weeks that work best for your schedule.

You will learn strategic leadership skills such as how to:

-Handle challenging situations with poise and confidence so that you come across as a leader who knows what they’re doing.

-Resolve conflicts quickly and decisively.

-Motivate others by clearly communicating your expectations and inspiring enthusiasm, trust, and creativity in a team.

Dale Carnegie Training is an online leadership course and in-person as well - you choose! This type of flexibility allows you to choose the best learning format for your company and for your leaders. Depending on how your leaders learn best, you can choose a leadership training platform that best suits your needs and with that, you will increase the effectiveness of the training. 

Cornell Online Executive Leadership Training

Cost: $4,900 per person (4 month period) or monthly installments of $663 per person.


  • Eight courses that span over a two-week period.
  • Everything is instructor-led and administered online.
  • Recommended for mid-level and above managers with 5+ years of experience.
  • Courses focus on decision-making skills, confrontation management, communication skills, team building, and conflict resolution.

Cornell Online Executive Leadership Training is a program that operates on an online platform, meaning you can take the course from any computer with internet access.

Cornell’s leadership courses are designed to help leaders and managers in all industries and organizations develop their leadership skills and maximize the performance of their people.

The leadership development programs are offered at three different levels: Basic, Advanced, or Executive. The Basic Level provides foundational leadership training while the Advanced Level offers more advanced content for experienced business leaders who are looking to refine their management skills. Cornell's Executive level is designed specifically for executives who have made it to the top of their career path but still want professional development opportunities. All three levels offer engaging multimedia presentations alongside interactive exercises that give leaders the ability to test strategic leadership concepts and skills. 

Best Online Leadership Training Courses

A Better Leader Leadership Training

Cost: $5,400 annually or $450 monthly


  • Easy drag and drop online lesson scheduler
  • Extensive library of monthly leadership lesson content
  • Ability to schedule lessons up to a year in advance
  • Tailored discussion points for company-wide alignment
  • Data-driven progress reports
  • Downloadable reference sheet for every lesson
  • Interactive quizzes and a leadership certificate
  • BONUS leadership video content from subject matter experts

The A Better Leader Leadership Training Program was designed specifically with HR professionals in mind - so it will focus on management and leadership skills that are important in the workplace today. This online leadership course is offered entirely remote, which means you don't have any travel expenses or time off of work when enrolling! The program covers a wide range of topics, including how to deal with employees who have leadership issues, how to manage your leadership team more effectively, and gain the qualities that will lead you to be a successful leader.

The course also includes individual leadership assessments, so you can identify what leadership style is most effective for you. A Better Leader provides follow-up support and leadership coaching, to ensure you're always supported and encouraged as you continue your leadership journey.

LEAD Academy Leadership Workshop

Cost: 1/2 day in-person workshop for $2500, full day in-person for $3500, 2-hour virtual workshops are $1750


  • Virtual OR In-Person
  • 2.5 Sessions
  • Highly interactive discussions
  • Presentation slides
  • Workbooks for participants to further engage with the content
  • Supplemental videos for every leadership principle
  • Job aids & coaching guides

LEAD Academy leadership training is an intensive six-session, 12-module leadership course delivered virtually or in-person through innovative tools and experiential learning that empowers recently hired, newly appointed, or previously untrained leaders to better understand and use their strengths to support the organization's growth.

The leadership courses at LEAD Academy are designed to cover a variety of strategic leadership topics, from understanding your leadership style and the leadership styles of others to negotiating challenges with peers and managing conflict among team members. The instructors for these leadership courses draw on their extensive leadership experiences to help companies train their leaders through innovative tools and experiential learning.

In addition, this leadership training can also be used as an effective leadership development program for newly hired managers or those that have not been trained as leadership.

The leadership programs at LEAD Academy are available for those leading virtual teams or those who work remotely, or as part of leadership development programs for managers and supervisors seeking to develop their leadership skills.

LEAD Academy is a program designed with experts from some of the world's most experienced leadership development and coaching organizations. 

How To Choose A Leadership Development Program

Which Leadership Training Program is Best For You?

Ultimately, many factors will contribute to your decision about which leadership training is best for your company. You should consider your budget, the size of your organization, and what your staff may need a focus on. You may also need to consider an online leadership course if your team is remote, or in-person might be more effective if that is how your team prefers to learn.

Ask yourself what is most important for your leaders and their development, and implement a training course that will best align with those goals. We hope this review of some of the popular training programs was helpful in narrowing down what might be most beneficial for your leaders. We strongly believe that engaged, trained leaders work closely to support your company culture, and the right training will help your company do just that.

If you're still not sure which course, if any, will work for you and your business leaders, that's okay! A Better Leader is proud to offer consistent training that creates engaged leaders. Our clients say that it "allows us to provide consistent training that really gets people thinking!". Our training allows you to choose from over three years of monthly lessons organized into four focus areas: Support, Motivate, Improve and Connect. Unlike "one-and-done" training solutions, A Better Leader provides inspirational and actionable development for your leaders, any time, anywhere.

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About the Author Chris Craddock

As the leader of Projections' production team, Chris loves to inspire others to perform at the highest levels! From the most challenging leadership opportunities to brainstorming the latest topics leaders want to learn about, Chris provides clear direction and vision.

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