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Accelerating the Leadership Pipeline

How can an organization accelerate its leadership pipeline?

In the Oil and Gas sector we see a generation of leaders about to retire and take all of their knowledge with them. Who will fill their shoes?

In tech companies we see young leaders stepping into huge roles with little guidance about what to expect or how to succeed. Will they sink or swim?

These challenges are familiar to many industries. Nearly all of my clients tell me they want their next generation of leaders ready faster.

But how do that – more Myers Briggs assessments? A new 360?

What if there was a smarter, faster way ………… c’mon, you knew there would be right!

In the previous post I introduced you to the science of expert performance and why some individuals come to dominate their field. A lot of you watched that video then told me, ‘I like this approach but how could you do this for leaders?’ Well I am glad you asked.

In this video I’ll explain step by step how we are helping organizations transfer the knowledge of one generation of high performing leaders to the next and then put that into practice. Remember this is based on decades of research about how people develop into elite: surgeons, athletes, chess players, musicians and many more. Leaders aren’t surgeons, but development is development.

In our field we talk a lot about the ‘art’ of leadership development. It’s time we talked about the science.

Enjoy the video & send me any Q’s –


  • Gail Reichert

    This makes so much sense in terms of development and with respect to development activities that truly build expert performance. We do need more of the science of performance in the business world. So for me to integrate and check understanding, here’s what I’m hearing.
    * Identify top 10% expert performers in your organisation (especially at the level above the target level)
    * Interview to elicit their top challenges that enable them to master that level in the organisation
    * Interview them to download their mental models that enable them to navigate these challenges
    * Identify common approaches
    * Introduce 8-10 top challenges to learners, what’s your top
    * How do you approach this challenge?
    * Introduce them to the approach used by experts, have them explore the difference in approach
    * Deliberate practice in action, feedback and struggle
    * Eventually they succeed
    * Get learners to reflect on how they do what they do now
    * Move on to next challenge

    What have I missed or misconstrued.

    Thanks for this Nicholas – great opportunity and great learning.