Tampa Bay local, long-time government leader launches Next Level Leadership Development

Tampa Bay local, long-time government leader launches Next Level Leadership Development

Having spent decades leading crucial government programs across the country, a Tampa Bay native has returned home and is using his career of experience to help other businesses succeed.

Building on a long and successful career that has taken him all over the country, Logan Gregory is back home in Tampa Bay and has founded Next Level Leadership Development as a way to help people improve their companies – and lives – through leadership. Throughout his career, Gregory has gone to great lengths to study the effectiveness of good leadership, as well as the pitfalls of bad leadership (or even a complete lack of it.) Now, he wants to use that knowledge and experience to support others.

Some lessons were learned the hard way, while success stories and programs such as the Harvard Kennedy courses have provided Gregory with constructive opportunities for growth and understanding. In one instance, Gregory stepped up to save a ship that was quickly sinking. In another, he found himself as a young professional thrown into a management role with no training or guidance.

All of it, the full 30 years of experience and study, has informed the mission and tactics behind Next Level.

“I’ve been putting it together for people who have maybe struggled like I had to,” Gregory explained. “I am a student of leadership. I’ve taken the things I like and discarded the things I don’t, and I’ve developed the tools I like to use.”

Leadership means most for small business

While “leadership development” can sound like something meant for the corporate offices of Fortune 500 companies, Gregory believes the biggest impact – and the biggest place of need – can actually come with small businesses, local chains and mid-level companies. The smaller the operation, the more important one individual becomes, making communication and trust all the more vital to success.

It’s the smaller businesses, the restaurants and breweries or firms and agencies, who often don’t have leadership training in place. As a business grows and new hires are promoted from within, people are often thrown into a role with no systems in place to help ensure success, instead left to figure it out on the fly.

Gregory’s goal is to help businesses avoid (or fix) those pitfalls by fostering trust and communication through established and proven programs. Next Level customizes training and guidance plans tailored to each company, using research and results-based tools like Everything DiSC and The Five Behaviors personal and team development solutions.

Leadership means long-term solutions, not just quick fixes

Gregory acknowledges that more times than not, by the time Next Level is being called in, problems have already surfaced. And while he aims to help them solve those problems, his goal goes far beyond a simple fix. He wants to give them tools and guidance that will continue to help long after his training has ended.

“My goal is to help them find a path that they want to get on and stay on,” Gregory said. “Where training becomes effective is when you take some of the lessons in that training and put it into daily use. That’s what I’m doing with these companies. Build habits that are good habits, and you become a lot more flexible and malleable to learn new things.

“It’s not a one-and-done. I’m not going to fly in and give you the magic five behaviors and then walk away. It’s a longer process than that. Especially if an organization is really struggling to turn the ship around.”

Investing in people is key for growth

In Gregory’s years of experience, the primary lesson he’s learned is one that sounds obvious but is often overlooked or forgotten as a business grows. Ultimately, it comes down to the people – to individual development, support and investment.

In his observation, the worst environments and biggest problems have been in places where support for the people is replaced by support for the business at large, leading to crumbling foundations of trust and empathy.

“There’s a big difference between management and leadership,” Gregory said. “Management is making sure the way you do things is efficient. Leadership is about people. You help them become better people not just on the job, but at home.

“Arrogance and narcissism just don’t work. It worked in the ‘50s maybe, but in today’s business and in agency environments, it just doesn’t work. The reason I started Next Level is to help improve that.”

Next Level offers a process for development

When Gregory and Next Level go into a new company, the first step is to get an understanding of the leadership structure. Often, he’s discovered, there isn’t one. Gregory believes businesses first need to have an idea of what environment and structure their people are operating in, as well as what they’re operating against.

Once ownership or the executive level are able to identify their various teams and how they interact and work together, the key for Next Level is not only pinpointing what individuals believe the problems are, but making sure they know what’s working, too. The last thing anyone wants is to create problems that didn’t exist before.

With all those pieces in mind, Next Level is able to tailor a program that fits the company and its needs. And in nearly every case, Gregory says, investing time, resources and support in people at every level of the company is of the utmost importance.

“If you know how to take care of your people and lead them, I believe the financial part of the business will improve,” he said. “You can be the customer-comes-first business and treat your employees like garbage – that’s not going to work. You’re going to be hiring and firing and re-hiring people. Time is money, and you’re going to lose a lot of time if you’re constantly rolling people through your company.”

Everyone is a leader, no matter the position title

One thing in particular Gregory has learned is that leadership comes at every level and in every position, and it’s up to the company to reinforce and support that truth.

“Sometimes you don’t think of yourself as being a leader because of the position you’re in, but leadership needs exist at every position,” he said. “One of the things, looking back now, that’s glaring to me was that I had no preparation or training on leadership when I got my first management position. I got the training after the fact. I learned a lot through all the mistakes I made.”

And now, decades later, Gregory is back home using that experience to support the businesses that keep communities growing.

To learn more about Next Level, visit nextlevelleadershipdevelopment.com.

*This article was produced in partnership with and sponsored by Next Level Leadership Development.

Subscribe Now

Don’t miss out on All Things Good in the Burg 👉

👇 GET UPDATES 👇

Stay connected to All Things Good in the Burg by subscribing today.

Recent Stories