Enhancing first-line leadership at a world-leading energy group

  • A flagship development program for first-line managers has improved leadership behavior, created a pipeline of high potential leaders and created tangible benefits across the business
  • The modular program leads to a recognized qualification from the Institute of Leadership and Management
  • 200 managers - from the UK, France, Italy and China - took part in the first program, creating valuable cross-cultural networking opportunities
  • To open up the learning to even more participants we’re transferring our delivery capability and running ‘train the trainer’ sessions, so the that program can be co-delivered with the client’s facilitators in the future

After recognizing that it needed to create a pipeline of high potential leaders, this international energy group wanted to commission a leadership development program that would equip its first-line managers with the four key behaviors it expects from its leaders: impact, involvement, inspiration and integrity.

Following consultations with the group’s leaders and managers, we designed and delivered a practical program that would develop leadership skills and techniques that could be immediately applied in their workplace.

The resultant program involved 62 hours of classroom-based and self-directed learning over eight months. It featured 360-degree feedback, workshop activities, individual and team exercises, games, virtual group sessions, one-to-one coaching, peer coaching and e-learning. 

The client wanted the program to lead to an externally-recognized qualification, as they were keen to ensure that the participants obtained personal value from the learning. We therefore accredited the content to the Institute of Leadership and Management’s Certificate in Leadership and Management Skills Level 3.

In the first year, 200 managers took part - from the UK, France, Italy and China - after being nominated by their line managers. Bringing the participants together for the learning created cross-cultural networking opportunities, which proved particularly valuable. The participants also worked in action-learning sets and undertook projects and an assignment on a real-world business challenge. 

The program succeeded in enhancing leadership behavior across the group. The participants learned how to influence and motivate others in the organization and they developed practical leadership skills as well as the confidence to apply these skills in the workplace. Evidence shows that they successfully introduced improvements in their teams as a direct result of their learning. They also improved their understanding of critical workplace issues.

Making it scalable for the client…
The success of the program has led the client to open it up to even more first-line managers. The annual intake could reach 400 when other divisions within the business are included. To cope with this expansion, we are transferring our delivery capability to the client, so that the program can be co-delivered with their facilitators in the future. We’re running ‘train the trainer’ sessions for the new facilitators, to help them understand the requirements of the program and to ensure they’re able to put the learning into the context of the business.