- Using leadership programs to grow leaders to a common competency model is a crazy idea. No one can be all things and no two successful leaders are exactly the same.
- Like Amazon and Google adapt to our choices with suggestions directed at our specific needs, a leader in an organization also has unique needs. The first question for leadership development should be "Who Are YOU?"
- Each leadership position has unique needs by merit of its place in the organization. This position can be assessed and profiled, and candidates for this position can be matched to this profile for career planning purposes.
- Leadership content can now be distributed in a personalized, chunked way based on the unique individual receiving it.
Here's what I noticed:
- It implies that leadership positions are stable over time. I don't believe that's the case, but I don't know the 'expiration' time.
- Learning and Development has been trying to figure out how to deliver distributed, customized content for years and it's really hard, harder than suggesting what book you might want to read next.
Can virtual leadership 'chunks' effectively enable leaders? More importantly, is at least SOME human interaction necessary to grow leaders?
Here are my suggestions for an Algorithm for Leadership Succession Planning:
- Assessments are important to provide data (versus assumptions and beliefs) and they supplement the normal person-to-person contact needed to choose a candidate. We use the TriMetrix ™ assessment for this. This powerfully thorough instrument profiles behaviors, workplace motivators, values, stress levels, competencies and business acumen.
- Benchmark your key leadership positions. Use focused interviews to create Key Accountabilities, and build a model. Revisit the Key Accountabilities at least every five years if not more frequently as the world changes.
- Identify high potential leaders and compare each of them to your benchmarks. Run gap analysis and comparison reports to see what the data shows, who your real high potential leaders are, not who you think they are. Leadership Succession Planning should never be just a popularity contest.
- When selecting candidates for promotion into critical leadership positions, be very explicit with them and with all stakeholders about what strengths they bring to the position and how they will be 'different' than the person they are replacing. The profiling will give you valuable data about what you 'get' and what you don't.
Want to see what a Gap Report looks like? Drop Brittney a note at firstname.lastname@example.org