Your Leadership Pipeline is Failing—Do You Know Why?

How to Tell if You Have a Strong Leadership Pipeline

Your leadership pipeline is a critical part of your future plans for your company. However, sometimes the effortsleadership pipeline put into developing employees into leaders can feel random. Companies often get caught up in chasing the latest fad or philosophy for leadership development, with no reliable proof that their efforts are working. Whether it’s training, online classes, books or a retreat, developing leaders in this way may be futile.

A recent study conducted by Deloitte suggests that your efforts to develop your leadership pipeline may be using all the wrong tools and resources. Instead, here are the elements that the study results support for effective development:

Eat, sleep and breathe company culture. Companies with effective leadership pipeline initiatives make everything about company culture. They decide on a few values that the company will embrace and they organize every aspect of daily work and future planning to support those values. Your employees should have a lot of room for individual work styles and independent thinking, but it should all happen under the umbrella of your company culture.

Let your future stars take risks. One of the more challenging aspects of transitioning your employees into leadership is the new level of responsibility. Companies that excel at leadership development don’t wait for their employees to get a promotion in order to put the reins in their hands. Give your employees many opportunities to get comfortable with decision-making and risk-taking and watch how they grow into their future roles.

Give your employees exposure. Provide ways for them to network with colleagues, with your most influential customers and with important players in your industry. Not only will you get a chance to witness these professional relationships and how they grow, but you’ll see your employees embrace new ideas and broaden their thinking and approaches to challenges in your company.

Create a learning culture. Companies with a healthy leadership pipeline initiative tend to talk not only about successes and what went right, but also embrace failures as learning opportunities. This means that upper management must shift their tone, considering every lackluster result to be a chance to learn and gain new perspective. Invite new ideas, conversations about change and the best practices of competitors.

Get to know your employees. Schedule regular coffee meetings, participate in reviews and stop by your employees’ desks, but go deeper in your understanding of your employees, too. Utilizing a tool like a behavioral assessment gives you critical, objective information about your employees’ tendencies and motivations. You’ll find out what makes your stars shine and how they’ll respond in a variety of situations.

Stop chasing the latest trends in leadership development and, instead, embrace the smart business practices that boost your leadership pipeline and make your company a great place to work. At PI Consulting Group, we have the resources and tools to help you develop your future leaders, and we also know how to help you build a culture where leaders are cultivated and encouraged. Give us a call to talk more.