How Top Companies Breed Stars

Geoff Colvin, Fortune Senior editor at large has just done a great piece for Fortune Magazine on how the best companies go about developing leaders. It is a long piece – but here are the headlines:

“You couldn’t be blamed for rolling your eyes when American Express chief Ken Chenault says, “People are our greatest asset.” CEOs always say that. They almost never mean it. Most companies maintain their office copiers better than they build the capabilities of their people…”

“A close look at the companies on our list reveals a set of best practices that seem to work in any environment… These companies operate in every kind of industry and are based all over the world. But what’s most striking are traits they share – specifically, nine practices that combine to create world-class leadership development.”

  1. Invest time and money
  2. Identify promising leaders early
  3. Choose assignments strategically
  4. Develop leaders within their current jobs
  5. Be passionate about feedback and support
  6. Develop teams, not just individuals
  7. Exert leadership through inspiration
  8. Encourage leaders to be active in their communities
  9. Make leadership development part of the culture

Great to see that much of this resonates with what we teach in the Progressive Managers Network! Delegation, coaching, feedback all come through strongly in this research.

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