Senior leaders at a Midwest financial institution were near retirement, and the next generation of leaders was not perceived to be ready. A clear plan to develop leaders was needed.
The Human Emergence Group (HEG) Solution
Identify organizational purpose, current state, and ideal state
Create Vision Domains™ – the next generation of competencies – to orient leadership development
Assess future leaders
Provide training and coaching to develop the next generation
Building Executive Talent from Within
Because many of its top leaders were nearing retirement, this financial institution recognized a need to develop their executives more effectively. They did not have an established program to develop managers into senior leaders. The firm did have a management development program that addressed the transition from frontline employee to first-level manager, which had not been improved for several decades.
The firm reached out to HEG to address its dual needs: to improve the management development program and to create an executive development program to address the training and retention of its most promising leadership candidates.
Management Training and Coaching
To upgrade the existing management development program, HEG started with the Management Development Program (MDP). We interviewed dozens of employees – from the entry level employee to the CEO – to get a better understanding of the institution’s purpose, organizational structure, training regimen, and culture. We also followed up with the managers and executives who had graduated from the MDP, as well as some of the trainers themselves, to better determine how the program was helping the organization achieve its purpose, what was working, and where there were opportunities for improvement.
HEG worked with the financial institution to develop a leadership vision for the future, grounded solidly in the present circumstances, using its unique process known as the Ideal State Action Plan, or ISAP™ process. Through interviews and observations, the strengths and weaknesses of the institution’s leadership were revealed, as well as the key behaviors and pathways needed for mission alignment and organizational success.
Through the ISAP and subsequent interviews, a set of managerial Vision Domains – the next generation of competencies – were identified that would serve as the foundation of an ideal-based management development program designed to meet the financial institution’s current concerns and achieve its ideal vision. The newly revised program recommended by HEG focused on the firm’s 1) understanding and assessing themselves on the manager Vision Domains; 2) using the Purposeful Leader Process™, a process to identify Vision Domain strengths and weaknesses and key actions steps, to create a development plan; 3) participating in relevant trainings to improve social emotional intelligence; and 4) engaging in executive coaching.
HEG helped the firm develop several new training modules and assisted in ensuring personnel were adept in delivering these modules. HEG also helped to revise the process for selecting candidates for the Management Development Program, making the process more transparent so that employees could clearly see the roadmap to potential management opportunities.
HEG took a similar approach to creating a new executive development program for the financial institution. A group of senior leaders developed an ISAP to identify the current state and the ideal state of executive proficiency and potential pathways towards the ideal state. This process led to the creation of a set of executive Vision Domains.
The resulting executive development program, provided to all the executives and selected groups of high potential managers, was comprised of several key components:
A 360° assessment on executive Vision Domains. Executives received detailed reports and development plans to increase Vision Domain proficiency and ideal executive behaviors.
Personality style training and Emergence Coaching training for executives to help them understand personality styles and use emergence coaching to develop their reports.
Ongoing Emergence Coaching of the executives to ensure their ongoing executive development based on the Vision Domains and their application to their roles in the organization.
A Path Forward. The new program provides the financial institution with a thorough assessment and evaluation of each leader’s strengths and potential areas for improvement, and offers detailed feedback to the leaders themselves, giving them specific areas and behaviors on which to work. HEG also identified several additions to the executive toolkit, including more focus on working with personality styles and Emergence Coaching.
The benefits of both the revamped management development program and the new executive development program are evidenced by the skills and insights gained by the participants, as well as their prospects for moving forward as potential leaders in the financial institution. Executives consider the engagement with HEG to be an unqualified success. By putting a better and more holistic system in place, the institution has gained the peace of mind of knowing that its brightest hopes for the future are being built from within.
“I was very alone running my company. I have a team of 20 people, but when it came right down to it, I felt pretty alone. What I’m finding now, for the first time, is that I have other people stepping up and joining me. It’s fantastic!”