FEATURED CASE STUDY
Fostering Succession Readiness in Burlington
In Burlington, Ontario, a local company faced a significant challenge. Proficient in nurturing functional experts, they grappled with creating a strong pipeline of general managers. Their ability to assemble a team of skilled financial analysts, IT professionals, operations leaders, and sales account executives was hampered by a scarcity of leaders ready to assume broader responsibilities. The option of hiring an external general manager carried risks, as did gauging an internal candidate’s readiness for a more expansive role.
Empowering Growth through Action-Learning
Addressing this concern, Greg Pinks collaborated closely with the Burlington organization to introduce an ‘Action-Learning’ initiative tailored for emerging leaders. This six-month action-learning immersion was designed for immediate contributions to organizational success while fostering personal and professional growth for leaders fast-tracked to assume broader roles. Teams of 7-9 high-potential leaders from very different business areas were entrusted with advising the Executive Team on important organizational challenges.
Emerging from Functional Experts to Enterprise Leaders
Over different cohorts, these teams tackled challenges like ‘how to secure market share in the mid-market,’ ‘how to cultivate a customer-centric culture,’ and ‘which emerging market to best explore.’ These challenges were substantial for individuals who had previously worked only as experts within their specific function. With guidance from an Executive Coach (helping them navigate the inner organization) and a Learning Coach (dedicated to their personal growth), teams embarked on a transformative journey.
Their mission encompassed group formation, exhaustive research, hypothesis testing, and finally presenting insights to the executive team.
In the short-term, the organization in Burlington quickly saw which participants thrived in their more strategic roles, and which struggled. Participants also determined if these types of opportunities energized them, or drained them. In the long-term, the internal pipeline of senior leaders grew substantially.
Contact Axiom to explore a similar approach within your organization.