Developing a Global Leadership Pipeline for a World Leader in Business Materials

Client Success Story: Developing a Leadership Pipeline for a European World Leader in Building Materials

The Client Need

One of the largest companies in France contracted with EP to enhance a traditional hi-potential leadership development program by integrating a business simulation into the existing course work. The program for high-potential junior managers was being redesigned – away from a traditional management training course into one with a much greater emphasis on individualized assessment, feedback, and coaching.

A more rigorous nomination process was established in order to make talent management a much greater priority and to also change the culture away from one where attendance at training and development programs was being seen as simply a reward for good performance.

The challenge for EP was to provide a business simulation that provided a “leadership laboratory” that helps participants:

  • Experience the dynamics and leadership challenges of working in teams, such as effective decision making and effective performance under time pressure
  • Observe, experience, and explore different styles of working
  • Help them better understand their strengths and weaknesses and to practice new leadership techniques in a safe learning environment.
  • Identify specific actions to be included in their personal development plans.
  • The solution also provided opportunities for the leadership coaches assigned to each of the participants to observe and provide feedback on specific instances where participants did or did not exhibit behaviors consistent with the competencies expected of high potential managers. It also was built to support a highly diverse employee population – typical groups included roughly 40 participants from over 20 countries.

The EP Solution

Working with a leading HR development company, EP designed a set of experiential learning modules within the context of a business simulation. The new design received the following feedback from the executive coaches: “EP’s design was so well done that the integration of the business simulation and the development center gives us the perfect opportunity to collect quality data on participants’ competencies in dealing with pressure, handling ambiguity, learning, and their ability to sustain performance and maintain productive relationships.”

Benefits / Outcomes

The program has been highly successful on different levels. Employees regard the personalized assessments and development plan as critical for their future success. The assessments have also been very useful for the Talent Management organization in their succession planning process. A company funded analysis of past participants over the last three years shows that all meet or exceed internal benchmarks for success and are promoted to senior management positions within three years after the program.

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