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The lesser spotted leader

The lesser spotted leader

The leaders you have today may not have the right talents for your business in the future. Jim Tapper, Managing Director, the Centre for High Performance Development (CHPD) offers an insight into how to spot tomorrow’s talent.

There are lots of ways to assess whether someone is good at their job, but it’s much harder to know if they’ll be good at the next level up until they’ve actually done that job.  Making the wrong choice can be costly. There are, however, ways to identify who has the potential to be tomorrow’s leaders and then develop them accordingly.
Running an assessment centre with real-life simulations and robust diagnostics is a highly effective way to determine leadership potential.

Such an objective approach can give an accurate picture of leadership potential and will also highlight areas for development, but they are only as good as the assessments and diagnostics employed. CHPD’s research with academic institutions over the last 30 years has led it to identify 12 High Performance Behaviours (HPBs) which are directly linked to leadership effectiveness and business performance. These leadership behaviours are critical, particularly when you consider that in challenging economic environments like those we face today, up to 40 per cent of an organisation’s performance can be attributed to its leaders.

High Performance Behaviours are not innate characteristics, in other words something you are born with, but learned behaviours. With in-depth assessment, strengths and weaknesses can be identified. Based on CHPD’s benchmark of more than 10,000 leadership profiles, you can also see how capable the leaders assessed would be at performing at the next level up, and what their development needs might be to achieve a higher level of performance and even promotion. It’s also possible to identify which behaviours your organisation needs to focus on to respond to current market conditions.

Clearly leadership behaviours do not tell the whole story when it comes to predicting success. Your leaders need to be technically capable of doing the job and they need to have a preference for leadership, not all of us enjoy leading others. There also needs to be a review of all assessment criteria against the business needs. Spotting leadership potential is not an exact science, but today, with the right assessments and identified behaviours, you can take much of the guesswork out of the task.

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