New Research on Accelerating Leadership Readiness

Almost 70% of high-performance organizations use coaching, yet more than half report ineffective management as a barrier to high-potential employee development.

(Seattle, WA) May 7, 2013 - The latest research from the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp), a corporate network dedicated to revealing the people practices that drive market performance, outlines a five-step framework for creating a competitive edge by accelerating the leadership development of high-potential employees based on the practices of high-performance organizations.

Of the five steps—which range from exposing high-potential employees to a broad business curriculum to selecting the right success measures—offering coaching (whether from superiors, peers or external coaching professionals) as a tool to accelerate leadership development was revealed as a practice that correlates with market performance. Yet the majority of organizations overall (56%) indicate that their high-potential employee development is significantly hindered by leaders that are not effective at coaching and managing them.

This finding stresses the importance of creating structuralized programs and processes to ensure proper identification and development of the right talent for future leadership. It's simply not enough to promote people who are good at their jobs in hopes that they will also excel in a management position.

i4cp member organization Grainger, a global distributor of industrial supplies, has emphasized leader-led development and in 2009 launched its Leaders as Coaches program. Three years later, John Lawson, Director of Learning and Development, said the investment in the program has been well worth it. Nearly 80% of participants in Grainger's program said that the training helped them better understand expectations around coaching and teaching. "I think we have better leaders," Lawson added. "When it comes to this core competency—coaching, providing feedback, being reflecting—this is table stakes."

Grainger is one of several organizations featured in the new report, Accelerating High-Potential Employees on the Path to Leadership, alongside i4cp's five-step process for high-potential development, which can help your company map out its path to leadership development for the future. Take that first step and download the report now, available exclusively to i4cp members. Not a corporate member? Learn more about i4cp membership at

About i4cp

i4cp focuses on the people practices that make high-performance organizations unique. Years of research make it clear that top companies approach their workforces differently. In recognition of our status as the largest and fastest-growing network of its kind, i4cp was named to the prestigious 2012 Inc. 500|5000 list. We work with our network of organizations to:

  • Reveal what high-performance organizations are doing differently
  • Identify best and next practices for all levels of management
  • Provide the resources to show how workforce improvements have bottom-line impact

Through our exclusive, vendor-free network―in which peers collaborate to drive strategic research, as well as share tools and insights—i4cp provides a unique, practical view of how human capital practices drive high performance. For more information, visit