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Sometimes hiring an executive from the outside can be the only available short term option. However Drotter, Noel and Charan argue that for the long term, management should build, develop and maintain a pipeline of skilled, prepared leaders from within the firm. Their Leadership Pipeline model helps to create such a funnel of future management talent by explaining what changes in time application, skills and work values are essential for making the transition from one leadership stage to the next. Also their model helps to understand the different demands of various management levels.
Origin of the Leadership Pipeline:
The Leadership Pipeline idea was based on work originally done at General Electric in the 1970s by Walt Mahler, a HR consultant and teacher. Mahler set out to identify all the changes that were required to be successful at different leadership levels. He concluded that the most important change involved work values: what one believes is important in the new job. Mahler also developed the Crossroads Model, suggesting that there were specific leadership crossroads in every organization, each with its own specific requirements. Drotter was a student and later a friend of Mahler and refined and adjusted the crossroads model into the leadership pipeline model. Executive Development and Coaching Consultant James Noel and Top-level Succession Planning Consultant and Professor Ram Charan also contributed later.
REVIEW OF LITERATURE:
Pragur & Such(2010) have described in their study Building a global management pipeline that classroom-based leadership development brings added value to organizations through informal learning and networking and strengthens culture; partnerships with colleges can ensure curriculum stays current and relevant as well as providing outside expert voice; virtual reinforcement ensures application of skills on the job; and measurement using the success case methodology provides quantitative and qualitative results, including 94 percent report behavioral change and improved cross-functional and cross-departmental awareness. Yoshida, & Geller,( 2008), have stated in their study Developing transnational leaders: five paradoxes for success that The five paradoxes leaders and managers in the twenty-first century need to consider to effectively manage for organization success are the: paradox of knowing (self and other); paradox of focus (individual and communal); paradox of communication (direct and indirect); paradox of action (doing and being); and the paradox of response (time focus: short and long-term). Brant & et al (2008) have found in their study Leadership succession: an approach to filling the pipeline that the development of a systematic approach to assessing executive potential by studying a major medical device manufacturer that aimed at substantially increasing its pipeline of candidates for top executive positions through programs designed to identify and assess high potential leaders. and Events of the case led to the development of systematic and integrated processes promoting succession planning and executive development. The program has been well received by high potential managers and seems to have yielded benefits in retention of top executive talent.
Moosa & panurach (2008) have demonstrated in their study Encouraging front-line employees to rise to the innovation challenge that in the search for innovation, front-line employees are usually not encouraged to be part of the creative team, even though they may have fresh ideas and genuine insights. However, front-line employees, those closest to the customers and the work of delivering products and services, have fresh ideas and genuine insights. This paper aims to investigate this issue. The implementation of a front-line program involves a set of six components applied systemically and thoughtfully: people, process, tools, technology, governance, and metrics. Neal A. (2007) has described in his study Maersk in China builds talent pipeline to meet challenge of rapid growth: Company expects to need 400 new middle managers a year for the next four years that this paper is to describe the development and delivery of a talentdevelopment program that cuts across cultural expectations and challenges the learning styles of the participants. It describes the obstacles and challenges and celebrates the successes achieved now the first batch has graduated, the second batch is mid-program and the third batch has just entered. Leskiw & Singh (2007) have found in their study Leadership development: learning from best practices that Six key factors were found to be vital for effective leadership development: a thorough needs assessment, the selection of a suitable audience, the design of an appropriate infrastructure to support the initiative, the design and implementation of an entire learning system, an evaluation system, and corresponding actions to reward success and improve on deficiencies. Harris & Barnes (2006) have demonstrated in their study Inspirational leadership: involving senior leaders in developing the next generation that The commitment of a significant amount of time to their development by respected senior leaders is a powerful
message and model to participants. The ability to interact in a deeply personal way with senior leaders is highly motivating to participants. The involvement of senior leaders in the design and development of programs gives them a strong interest in later participation. Being identified as an inspirational leader and having the opportunity to influence the next generation are personally rewarding to senior leaders. Kilian, & et al (2005) have described in their study Building diversity in the pipeline to corporate leadership that Common barriers to minority advancement include stereotypes about roles and abilities, the scarcity of mentors and personal networks, the lack of significant line experience and visible assignments, and, particularly for women, family responsibilities. Successful intervention methods include holding managers accountable for progress on diversity metrics, and training about diversity and associated attitudes and behaviors. Formal networks, mentoring programs, high potential talent identification and development, and work-life supports can also help an organization's diversity efforts. The creation of a strong business case linking the desired managerial changes to business outcomes is necessary, but research indicates that this may not be enough. A sense of social responsibility and distributive justice – eliminating inequities and stereotypes as the right thing to do – may also have to play a role. Reichwald & et al (2005) have facilitated in their findings Leadership excellence: Learning from an exploratory study on leadership systems in large multinationals that from a qualitative as well as quantitative perspective the paper reviews the implementation and usage of corporate leadership instruments and discusses current practices of large corporations trying to select, support, measure, motivate and develop very large numbers of leaders around the world. A conceptual leadership system is presented as a basic frame of reference.
Corace J. (2001) has demonstrated in her study Building a leadership pipeline that At the outset, I would like establish that there are no simple answers or magical solutions to quickly address the complex challenges of developing an effective supply of leadership talent. The concepts and insights provided here reflect the collective wisdom of a talented team of professionals within Johnson & Johnson who are responsible for the executive development of its senior leadership team. Over the past three years our department team has been effectively delivering senior-level leadership experiences, while at the same time conducting extensive internal and external research and developing approaches to strengthen the Johnson & Johnson leadership pool.
Defining the Manager’s Role and Responsibilities:
The issues of how to best manage people, performance, teams, and the business have risen to the top of the list as learning professionals ask themselves, “What leadership responsibilities and activities are needed to keep our business moving forward?” Clarifying the manager’s role, and the competencies required to fulfill that role, has led to the creation of a development path for this up and coming population. The foundations of leadership, as defined by the industry, include four core competencies: communication, coaching, influence and managing for change. Leadership Foundations: Developing the Next Generation Leadership Foundations, as an integrated management development curriculum, prepares the next generation to perform the tasks required to align and manage people, develop solutions, and execute strategy. Given the target population, this approach is a practical, results-driven, action-oriented one. Learners are introduced to the four core competencies that drive leadership success:
Difficult Conversations — Communicating for Results
Builds the capacity to raise difficult topics effectively — from performance feedback, to managing up, to delivering bad news • Coaching
Provides a performance improvement framework and the behavioral skills required to develop individuals to their fullest potential • Influencing for Results
Develops the ability to motivate, align and mobilize others over whom there may be no direct authority or control be that cross functions or reporting lines. • Managing Change
Introduces an approach for implementing organizational change, with a particular focus on how to build buy-in, make decisions, plan and drive accountability.
The Leadership Pipeline Model:
The Leadership Pipeline model provides a framework upon which organizations can be built and the old ones can be reconfigured. This entails a series of passages that There are six important passages in the leadership model that need to be recognized. Failure to recognize the leadership passages in the company will result to a clog in the leadership pipeline.
Managing Self to Managing Others:
The first passage is from managing Self to managing Others. This passage occurs when a person gets promoted to First line manager. The skills required in this position often include planning work, assigning jobs, motivating, coaching, and measuring the jobs of others. Though these skills are all easily learned, first-line managers often encounter difficulties in the change of values required to effectively manage others. To be a good First line manager, one must be able think about the importance of quality and quantity. A good first-line manager knows the value of having a sufficient work output without compromising the quality of work He should also be able to define and
delegate the work to others--this helps him maximize his workforce and tap other talents for a more effective and efficient job. Lastly, he should be able to build the necessary social contracts to be good at his position. To develop the person into becoming an effective firstline manager, three important things must be considered: • First, the manager should be prepared for the position. It is important to train him and to communicate well what is expected of him. • Second, it is important to monitor the manager. Determine where he is having difficulties in his role by observing where the gaps on his performance are. • Third, coaching and providing regular feedback to the manager is necessary. Peer learning and partnering is one effective method for feedback. Also, assign new work that will develop the first-line manager's much needed skills.
Managing Others to Managing Managers:
The second passage is from managing Others to managing Managers. This passage in the leadership pipeline is often ignored due to the assumption that managing others and managing other managers are quite similar. It is important to note that the two are entirely different tasks. Managing managers is a more crucial task and requires the key ability to identify who has the potential to be good leaders. Failure to do so can lead to holding firstline managers for technical work instead of managerial work. This then creates a clog in the leadership pipeline and eventually affects the performance of the organization. In order to see if the person is a misplaced Manager of Managers, try to watch out for the following signs: difficulty with delegating, poor performance management, failure to
build a strong team, single-minded focus on getting the work done, and choosing clones over contribution. To unclog this passage, managers should address four important areas: • • First, the manager must select and train first-line managers well. Second, managers should hold them accountable for managerial work instead of technical work. • • Third, managers should deploy and continue to re-deploy resources among units. Lastly, managers should set and manage the boundaries for first-line managers.
To ensure success in this particular leadership passage, managers must be very keen to observe and implement the following: • • • • • • • Amount of improvement in efficiency, Degree of importance in quality Frequency and impact of coaching sessions Number of first-line managers promoted Success rate of new first-line managers Teamwork within the assigned area Teamwork with other areas
Managing Managers to Functional Managers:
The third passage is from managing Managers to Functional managers. This passage is a much tougher transition because it requires an increase in managerial maturity. This means he has to learn to let go of previous management work, and instead focus on the functions of the business. The manager also needs to take on a more holistic approach and strategic mindset. This is required for creating functional strategies for the company and managing the whole function of the business. Before addressing what is needed in this passage, it is important to observe the following dysfunctional signs of a misplaced manager:
There is a failure to demonstrate knowledge of how the business operates, and there is lack of long-term thinking.
There is an inability to manage and value work that is unfamiliar or of little interest. The manager is immature and believes that he must control everything.
Remember that a strategic functional mindset requires following five steps: 1. Managers should produce a long-range strategy for at least three years. 2. Managers should have a state-of-the-art awareness. In an internet society, Functional managers should be abreast of what is technically and operationally possible for the company. 3. A complete understanding of the business model in detail and long-term strategic direction and goals is necessary. Mature leaders recognize the need to grasp the bigger picture.
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4. Managers should factor-in all aspects of the function into strategic thinking. They should spend more time learning about all functional areas-- including the areas that they are not responsible for. 5. Managers should know how to make trade-offs within the function that support business strategies, profitability, and competitive advantage. In order to address these steps, Functional managers should be trained. One of the best ways to train them is through hands-on learning activities. After these, they should be evaluated and be given feedback. There must also be a regular review of their calendar to assess where they apply most of their time. Finally, managers should let go of their old behaviours to become mature leaders.
Functional Managers to Business Managers:
The fourth passage is from Functional managers to Business managers. This passage is the most fulfilling and the most satisfying among all the passages because it gives the manager more control and say about the company operations and strategies. Though truly enjoyable, this position also requires a major shift in skills, time Applications, and work values. Neglecting these qualities ultimately results to Problems such as not valuing and using staff functions, failure to direct and energize finance, and other challenges that may negatively affect the business. Unclogging this pipeline is easier if you can identify the following warning signs of a misplaced leader: • • • The manager's communication is uninspired. He is unable to assemble a strong team. He fails to grasp how the business can earn profits.
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He is having difficulty with time management. He neglects soft issues such as people concerns.
In order to address these signs, there is a need to develop a monumental change in thinking. The manager simply has to follow these five things: think differently, manage complexity, value all functions, and be highly visible. These five steps allow the manager to develop the right kind of leader for this position.
Business Managers to Group Managers:
The fifth passage is from Business managers to Group managers. This particular passage places value in the success of other people's businesses. This focuses on group of businesses, not just one. Therefore, a Group manager is required to become more proficient at evaluating strategies, developing and coaching business managers, creating a portfolio strategy, and correctly assessing the right core capabilities to succeed. The point is to see the company issues in the broadest terms possible. Failure to acquire these skills ultimately results to failure in supporting the business managers. Try to watch out for the following signs of a misplaced leader in this particular passage:
First, the manager acts like business general managers rather than group executives. Second, he maintains an adversarial relationship with the corporation. Third, he ignores what has been uncovered. Fourth, he passes up development opportunities for the business managers.
• • •
Group Managers to Enterprise Managers:
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The sixth and final passage is from Group managers to Enterprise managers. These are the CEOs and presidents of the companies. This passage focuses more on values and skills because this position requires a visionary leader. Enterprise Managers would have to let go of the individual products and customers, and see the whole picture. Usually, they are required to set three or four priority goals, and focus on implementing the strategies for these goals. The biggest problem in this passage is that Enterprise managers often fail to change their values and mindset. Hence, it is very difficult to develop a CEO for this transition. In addition, challenges beset this particular passage which make it hard to properly transition a CEO. Some of these challenges are: • • • • • Delivering consistent top and bottom line results. Maintaining an edge in executing the strategies. Shaping the soft side of the corporation such as people issues. Setting the direction and vision for the company. Managing the company or enterprise in a more global context.
Unclogging this pipeline would be easier if the following warning signs are identified:
• • •
The CEO is ignorant of how the company runs its business. Building external relationships takes up majority of the CEO's time. The CEO fails to devote sufficient time addressing the soft side issues of the Business.
Small Business Model:
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For those who have a smaller company set-up, the leadership pipeline model is still applicable. This time there are only three major passages: 1. Managing Self to managing Others. 2. Managing Others to Functional manager 3. Functional manager to Business manager. It is still important to study these three passages, because understanding them offers several benefits: • •
It reduces the emotional stress of the transition and added responsibilities It helps people move through the leadership passages at the right speed It reduces the usual time frame necessary to prepare the person for the leadership position.
Remember that regardless of the size of a company, there will always be leadership passages that a company need to understand. The key is to tailor-fit the leadership pipeline model into the company's structure.
Limitations of the Leadership Pipeline:
Aimed at large organizations. Can however be used in medium-sized businesses as well, by removing the group management level and understanding that the business manager is also doing the work of the enterprise manager.
It takes a long time and sustained commitment to implement the framework.
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As with any model, try to avoid a too mechanical implementation of the concept. Think holistically and with complexity of people and organizations in mind.
Leadership pipeline problems occur at this level for two common reasons: • CEOs are often unaware that this is a significant passage that requires changes in values. • It's difficult to develop a CEO for this particular leadership transition. In terms of the latter, preparation for the chief executive position is the result of a series of diverse experiences over a long time. The best developmental approach provides carefully selected job assignments that stretch people over time and allow them to learn and practice necessary skills. Though coaching might be helpful as an adjunct to this development process, people usually need time, experience, and the right assignments to develop into effective CEOs. The former point is a matter of will and conscious effort. We've seen too many CEOs fail because they didn't view this leadership turn as a necessary one to make-or to make fully. They sustain the same skills, time applications, and work values that served them well as group managers and never adjust their self-concept to fit their new leadership role. They behave as though they are running a portfolio of businesses, not one entity.
Pipeline Performance Diagnosis:
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The leadership pipeline model provides a specific diagnostic test that helps pinpoint the precise level and certain passage where the leadership problems occur. This is important for three reasons: • First, problems are common to first-line managers who are at the first level of leadership. • • Second, the business managers end up doing more functional work. Third, group executives focus more on the business manager work rather than the group of businesses. The key to evaluating the leadership pipeline lies on the following:
• • •
Leadership skills: The abilities of the person to assume the management position. Time application: What they focus on and work on majority of their time. Values: Attitude towards managing the people they work with.
Clarifying the roles of each leadership position is very important. This magnifies the gaps and overlaps in the job description, thus helping the manager better see if the people's performance is effective and on the right track. Inevitably, performance gap will always emerge once someone is promoted to a new leadership level. Thus, development must be continuous. It should go on until the person has reached his full potential. Moreover, it is important to remember that reward is commensurate of performance. Full performers should be tested for excess capacity and promoted if they deserve it. To achieve full performance, every manager must: • Start with the boss and not the subordinate.
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• • •
Search for evidence of an appropriate change of values. Use action learning as a primary vehicle for development. Immediately address inappropriate performance.
Pipeline Succession Planning:
Succession planning is crucial in developing the leaders within a company. This perpetuates the enterprise by filling the pipeline with high performing people in order to ensure that every level has a steady supply of leaders to draw from. Succession planning involves certain rules that a company must observe: • • • • • Performance should be the focus. There must be a continuous flow in the leadership pipeline. The pipeline turns and transitions should be fully understood. Short-term and long-term plans must be simultaneously considered. It is important to transform the negative potential of the people to a more positive one.
Here are the following steps to planning the leadership succession: 1. Tailor-fit the leadership pipeline to your organization's set-up in order to meet succession needs. 2. Convert the standards of performance and potential into your own organizational language. 3. Document and communicate these standards throughout the organization.
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4. Use a performance matrix to evaluate succession candidates through a combined potential. 5. Frequently review and monitor the plans and progress of the entire pipeline. Try to watch out for possible causes of failure such as: selecting the wrong person; allowing the poor performers to stay in the job too long; refusal to seek or heed feedbacks; and, defining the jobs poorly.
It is not enough to just diagnose each leadership level and measure its performance. In order to effectively address the leadership pipeline clogs, coaching is necessary. The process of coaching is done in different ways. But from a leader's perspective, coaching is simply helping people achieve their full potential. It is the process of providing a truthful assessment of the manager's performance, and effectively communicating the benefits to both the individual and the organization. In coaching, a clear, complete, and compelling feedback process should be established. The feedback should clarify the expectations in each leadership passage. It should be simple but comprehensive enough. Most importantly, feedback must focus on a few developmental items needed by the manager.
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Addressing the leadership pipeline problems offers several benefits. First, it helps establish a common language inside the organization and builds a framework for self-management. Second, it provides the board with insights and information regarding the lack of job specification especially for the CEO or Enterprise manager position. Also, it provides information regarding the neglect of the organization's systems. Specifically, the following is how understanding the pipeline benefits a specific passage in the leadership pipeline:
CEOs or Enterprise managers. Following the leadership pipeline model serves as a risk management tool. It provides leadership strength and develops functional excellence.
Group managers. The leadership pipeline model clarifies their roles and clearly defines what their contribution should be. It also facilitates a proper succession planning by giving clear requirements for who the manager should be.
Business managers. The leadership pipeline model can prevent or reduce the number of people who are working at the wrong level.
Functional managers. They are provided with the knowledge of what is required and what the development targets should be. The ability to make important career decisions are also developed which will help them make a more informed decision.
Manager of managers. The leadership pipeline model makes it clear that managers at this level should value teaching and coaching.
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First-line managers. They are forced towards clarity that allows them to adopt certain values, develop certain skills, and adjust their schedules in order to focus on the right work. The leadership pipeline model also allows them to measure their performance and lets them know what kind of training and development they need to pursue to be a good first-line manager.
The name of the game has changed over the years. Today's businesses compete more on the strength of their intellectual capital rather than financial capital. This intellectual capital resides in the employees and needs to be harnessed in order to develop leadership with great potential to further the growth of the company. The new economy, globalization, and various new organizational perspectives have all generated a new set of leadership problems. In order to address these problems, companies need to tap leaders who are capable of meeting organization's demands. Remember that the key to tapping these kinds of leaders is to follow three areas in every leadership passage: skills requirements, time applications, and work values. The leadership pipeline model provides a framework for these three areas. With this pipeline model in mind, companies can develop their leadership capacity to achieve the organization's goals.
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