Three Insights on Developing Leaders

  1. We often overlook developing our best people.
  2. Very smart people like to learn—but, often don’t make the time.
  3. The learning can be done in such a way that “work gets done.”

New Physician Leadership Is Mandated

This global science-based company made a strategic decision to expand one of their physician roles to be accountable for a much broader set of outcomes. With a history of being highly educated in their fields, these leaders were unclear about the new expectations and all too aware of capability gaps in fulfilling them. We worked with the group to:

  • Create a strategic framework—a timeline—that would help us isolate the required capabilities based on the key outcomes and decisions required.
  • Developed a flexible, integrated approach to learning key people management, influencing, and project management skills.

Most importantly, participants learned from each other, challenged the thinking, and created new strategies that applied directly to their individual leadership scenarios.

Top Talent Developed For Succession Potential

A senior executive with a big strategic agenda identified an opportunity to develop a long-ignored set of mid-level leaders. The typical way of advancing had been through scrambling for candidates when a role was vacated. Most learning at all levels had been product-focused. We helped them:

  • Developed a six-month development program, sponsored by the senior team. Team members nominated participants and vetted a short list for each year’s program.
  • Focus on leadership capabilities to include creating a vision, conversations, stand-up and written presentation of “the story,” and engaging and influencing people.

Participants applied the learning to specific goals in their roles and a team business project.

In each class, the team’s recommendations were approved and individuals delivered real results attributed to their learning. Each year a small handful of participants were identified for future succession opportunities.

A Role Requiring Influence—A Strategic Skill Development

In this global company, a key function is deployed to project teams. Staff members provide highly variable input and expertise, primarily determined by the global project leads’ concept of the role’s place and value. The functional leaders cannot “control” how the project leader uses the role. The functional leaders identified a strong need for staff members to become far more influential, not only in the technical work, but to make sure they get a “seat at the table.” We worked with leaders to:

  • Developed a multi-stage learning program on how to be a strategic influencer with key stakeholders.
  • Illuminate root-thinking that was impeding success.
  • Advanced each person’s ability to understand key stakeholders and map out a plan for engagement.