Scott DeAngelo is the instructor of How to Craft an Insightful Leadership Profile: Assessing Leaders From Politicians and CEOs to Terrorists and Technologists
Scott has been pursuing his dual passions of leadership development and intelligence analysis for more than 35 years. He began his career at the Central Intelligence Agency as a Leadership Analyst and over the following 27 years held an array of assignments that allowed him to explore leadership and analysis as a line analyst and a manager of analysts. He was also involved in a number of Agency training initiatives. He spearheaded the development of CIA’s first-ever leadership analysis training program and contributed to the design and delivery of an analytic training program for the entire analytic directorate. In addition to his time at headquarters, Scott served nearly 10 years overseas in the Middle East, the Asia-Pacific region, and in Southwest Asia, where he worked with key partners to develop local analytic training programs. He is a recipient of the Agency’s Career Intelligence Medal.
After leaving the CIA, Scott joined the Center for Creative Leadership, a premier leadership research and development company, to serve as both an in-person and online course facilitator. He enjoys coaching first-line and middle managers as they seek to build and refine their individual leadership skills. Scott is also an adjunct professor at Utah Valley University, where he teaches courses in analytic tradecraft in the Center for National Security Studies.
Scott has BA degrees in Political Science and Italian Literature from California State University at Sacramento and an MA in Comparative Politics from Claremont Graduate School. He and his wife, Connie, live in Spanish Fork, Utah. They have five children and 11 grandchildren. Scott and Connie are avid scuba divers, and Scott volunteers his time with the Professional Association of Diving Instructors, where he uses scuba as therapy with veterans suffering from PTSD.
In this “Meet Your Instructor” post we asked Scott to tell people about how he found himself in the business of creating leadership profiles and what advice he gives people interested in learning and applying that skill in their careers.
Q: How did you end up becoming an expert in creating leadership profiles?
My first assignment at CIA was as a Leadership Analyst (1985). Prior to that, I did not even know there was such a field as leadership analysis. However, I quickly became fascinated by the challenge of trying to understand world leaders at a distance. It is one thing to be able to sit and interview someone or have them take a battery of tests to gain insight into their operating style and personality preferences. It is much more challenging though to try and understand a person’s leadership style, and such key components as their decision making style, approach to negotiations, and personal proclivities, through limited open source or intelligence reporting. The combination of analysis and people watching was a perfect fit for me.
Q: What one piece of advice would you give young folks who want to build a great career in your field?
I would advise people who want to pursue leadership analysis to gain a solid foundation in key analytic skills including critical thinking, analytic writing and effective briefing coupled with an in-depth knowledge about leadership theory and practice. Leadership analysis is really about bringing these two disciplines, analytic rigor and leadership studies, together.
Q: What got you so interested in creating leadership profiles that you wound up teaching it to others?
While working as a leadership analyst, I became a student of leadership theory to support my work but also to help with my own development as a leader as I moved into positions of increasing responsibility. I am now a self-described leadership analyst, scholar, facilitator and practitioner. The concepts I have learned about leadership as an analyst have helped me become a more effective leader myself. My interest in people and the practice of leadership have led me to want to teach others in both the theoretical world of university courses and the practical realm of leadership development programs for both the public and private sector.
Q: How have you benefitted from being a teacher of this subject?
Teaching leadership analysis and working as a leadership mentor and facilitator have been mutually reinforcing and have made me better in both of these related fields. Teaching leadership analysis at university level and to aspiring analysts around the world has pushed me to clarify my own thinking an understanding and has provided me a structure for organizing and codifying best practices in analysis. As a leadership trainer and facilitator, I have been able to see the theoretical concepts I share put into practice to benefit aspiring leaders in practical day-to-day ways.
Q: How will people benefit from the skills they learn in your course?
Taking this course will help participants hone their analytic skills in ways that are transferable across a number of disciplines. The fundamentals of analytic rigor cut across substantive disciplines. Political, economic, military and technical analysts can all benefit from the analytic principles covered in this course.
Leadership analysts will gain valuable insights and techniques for crafting stand alone leadership profiles that have impact and will be able to enrich their other analytic products by injecting the added dimension of the leadership lens to their work on political, military or economic products helping their analysis to stand out from and above that of their colleagues or competitors.
In addition, participants will learn tools and frameworks that will help them to better assess their own bosses in order to understand them better and will show how to adjust their own individual behaviors in ways that will allow them to work together even more effectively.
Finally, participants will learn about a wide range of leadership theories and practices that can help them sharpen and refine their own leadership skills.