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    Catalyzing Change Case Study

    First Level Leader Development in a Global Energy Corporation

    Change Challenge
    A division of a global energy company had a high attrition of its first level leaders in recent years, with more supervisors retiring soon.  The supervisors were selected from the operations and maintenance ranks and as such were technical experts.  But they had little or no supervisory experience, and it was clear that there were many gaps in required supervisory competencies.  Approximately 25% of the first level leaders had less than 2 years of experience as a supervisor with virtually no leadership training and development.
    Customized Solution
    Partnering with human resource staff, operations and maintenance superintendents and managers, and external training partners, we customized a ten-month "learning journey" for front line leaders.  The learning journey consists of a series of classroom workshops, individual and team performance assignments that add value on-the-job, and active managerial involvement.  Thereby, the business unit is able to intentionally manage a comprehensive approach to talent management and succession planning at the front line level, transforming technical experts to well-groomed, confident leaders. 
    Real Results
    The business unit now has a comprehensive talent management process for transitioning technical experts into their first supervisory role, building credible and confident new leaders, and for identifying and grooming high potentials from the hourly ranks.  The learning journey for the first level leaders gives their managers clear and specific opportunities to coach their subordinates using the tools and topics taught in the workshops.  The learning journey receives high marks from participants for its industry- and site-specific case studies and other learning tools enabling participants to apply the new "tools for their toolbags" to their workplace challenges and opportunities, and adding credibility and impact to the learning initiative, generating positive "buzz" for the program throughout the facility.  Additionally, the business unit is better able to partner with its training vendors, ensure consistent and site-specific terminology and examples, reduce redundancy among training offers, and enable more efficient utilization of training resources.