Jump Start New Hires – pg 9
Research: Development Pays Off – pg 24
Secrets of Pipeline Success – pg 30
An Expat’s View of China – pg 33
Great People. Great Organizations. Great Results.
Spring 2010 Vol. 6, No. 1
Dialing Up Quality
“We develop effective leaders
and believe that they will ensure
satisfied associates who deliver
outstanding customer service.”
DIRECTOR OF TALENT ACQUISITION, U.S. CELLULAR
GO VOLUME 6 • NUMBER 1 • SPRING 2010
F E AT U R E S D E PA R T M E N T S
9 Courageous Networking Primes a New Hire’s Fast Start 4 GO to Work with Talent Champions
A conversation with Bill Byham on the importance A Call for Great Leaders
of networking in the workplace. Elisa Bannon and her colleagues at U.S. Cellular are
committed to putting great leadership talent where it
10 How a Course is Made
matters most—in the company’s stores.
Behind the scenes with the team that produced
DDI’s new IM: ExPSM series for individual contributors. 14 What’s GOing On
DDI teams with CNBC in Asia and AFR BOSS magazine
17 Four Decades of Serving You!
in Australia to recognize standout business leaders.
On DDI’s 40th anniversary we recognize our people,
our innovations, and especially you. 24 Research
A new DDI study confirms the strong impact of
22 Many Reasons to Celebrate
Forty years in business is worth celebrating, but
what excites us most are our clients’ great results 26 Trend Tracker
and their wonderful feedback. Findings of a recent DDI study capture the state
of a discontented workforce.
30 The Middle Matters
Best-in-class companies believe mid-level is key 27 ERGO
to pipeline success. What’s the biggest change in the workforce since 1970?
32 The Adventure of a Lifetime 28 Coffee on the GO
A Western expatriate shares his impressions of Paul Osterman, author of The Truth About Middle
living and working in China. Managers, discusses the challenges facing the most
overlooked category of leaders.
Elisa Bannon and her
colleagues at U.S. Cellular
are committed to putting
great leadership talent
where it matters most—
in the company’s stores.
Alejandro Alumbreros is a busy guy. He manages two U.S. Cellular
stores in suburban Chicago, one of the largest markets for the nation’s fifth
largest full-service wireless carrier. What makes Alumbreros’ job especially
challenging is that, even though he previously worked in a U.S. Cellular store
for a year-and-a-half as a sales manager, he’s new to the store manager role.
He rattles off a long list of his new responsibilities, but Alumbreros isn’t
“We live our values and behaviors like no other company does,” he says
cheerfully. “We are here first for the customer. We take our customers very,
very seriously and make sure that we help them as much as we can.”
Alumbreros would appear to be exactly the type of individual a retail organ-
ization like U.S. Cellular would want in its stores serving customers and
Yet, he almost never got the chance. U.S. Cellular’s promotion process for
store and sales managers (the two frontline leadership positions in U.S.
Cellular’s stores) includes a challenging assessment. And many candidates
were coming up short. In fact, in 2007 just 57 percent of candidates were
successful in the assessment. Alumbreros was not among them.
For a company that hires 90 percent of its leaders from within, a 57-percent
success rate wasn’t acceptable, even though the company’s leadership felt
strongly about the integrity of the assessment and the need for it to be part
of the selection process.
GO TO WORK
However, rather than eliminating the assessment requirement, Then the assessment, which we kept intact because we
altering the existing process, or making the assessment less believe it’s an important tool, just becomes a validation.”
challenging, the talent champions at U.S. Cellular saw in the
What emerged from this rethinking was Leader of the Future,
problem an opportunity to build the organization’s leadership
an innovative program that both assesses and develops front-
line associates for store manager and sales manager roles.
A DYNAMIC BUSINESS PHILOSOPHY
DEVELOPING THE LEADERS OF THE FUTURE
U.S. Cellular operates on a business philosophy it calls the
Frontline associates enter the Leader of the Future program
Dynamic Business Organization. Elisa Bannon, U.S.
through a multi-step nomination process. Those accepted go
Cellular’s director of talent acquisition, describes it this way:
through a series of workshops where they are introduced to the
“We develop effective leaders and believe that they will ensure
specific competencies on which the selection decisions are
satisfied associates who deliver outstanding customer service.
made for the store manager and sales manager positions, and
This leads to positive business results.”
complete a curriculum of courses from DDI’s Interaction
The organization’s commitment to the Dynamic Business Management®: Exceptional Leaders . . . Extraordinary Results®
Organization philosophy underscores the importance of front- leadership development and Techniques for a High-
line leaders to U.S. Cellular, and also Performance Workforce® workforce
helps clarify the pain the organiza- development systems. Participants are
tion felt about the issues tied to the given suggestions for various applica-
“We live our values and tion opportunities, such as leading a task
low assessment success rate. With just
57 percent of candidates successful in
behaviors like no other force or mentoring a new associate, to
the assessment, the selection process company does. practice in real-time what they learned
in the courses.
was advancing far too few candidates We take our customers
to the next step in the selection In addition, the associates complete a
very, very seriously and
process, and also becoming a source Leader Career Battery, which identifies
of dissatisfaction for associates who
make sure that we help both individual strengths and develop-
aspired to leadership positions. As a them as much as we can.” ment opportunities, and draw on the
result, U.S. Cellular didn’t have the results to build their own personal devel-
talent pipeline it needed to fill critical opment action plans. The associates
open leadership positions. And that, in turn, meant stores present the plans to their leaders for buy-in and sign-off, and
sometimes would go several weeks without a store manager or work through them to close gaps and prepare for the assessment.
sales manager—a situation that was not conducive to deliver-
ing the outstanding customer service U.S. Cellular relies on to Additionally, to further prepare them, the associates are pro-
remain competitive and successful. vided with a realistic preview of the assessment experience
and have check-in meetings with their leaders to ensure their
The low success rate was problematic, but U.S. Cellular’s HR
leadership team understood that altering or eliminating the
assessment would do little more than dilute the selection After associates complete the assessment they meet with their
process and advance associates into leadership roles who had leaders and a DDI assessor, who presents the data and pro-
potential, but who weren’t yet ready to lead. vides guidance on building strengths and addressing areas of
“We said, let’s rethink this so it’s consistent with our belief
system,” says Jeff Childs, U.S. Cellular’s senior vice presi- Associates who complete the Leader of the Future sessions
dent and chief human resources officer. “Let’s design a pro- and development curriculum, and successfully go through the
gram that allows us to select those who we think have the assessment are then offered a store manager or sales manager
potential prior to their going through the assessment. Let’s position. Those who don’t pass the assessment work with
invest in their development and help build the competencies. their leaders to revise the development action plan with short-
term objectives addressing the improvement areas identified Bannon is enthusiastic and energetic when recalling how
during the assessment. The aim is to prepare the associate to Leader of the Future came to fruition, and it’s not hard to
be successful in the assessment the next time, once the super- imagine how those traits served her well as she sought to
visor believes that he or she is ready to be reassessed. build consensus among the various U.S. Cellular stakeholders.
In another critical component of Leader of the Future, super- Lamart Clay, director of sales for U.S. Cellular’s Nebraska
visors of the leadership candidates attend a two-day work- market, lauds Bannon for her ability to get everyone on the
shop, Developing Leadership Talent. During the workshop, same page and excited about the solution.
they increase their knowledge of the program, enhance their “Elisa was the glue. She talked to a lot of folks in the field
skills to support associates’ development prior to and after who had been successful at working on developing a pipeline
assessment, and build confidence so that they are better pre- of candidates, and was able to identify the best practices, take
pared to support the development of U.S. Cellular’s future away things that didn’t work, and create what we thought was
leaders. Just as the associates are required to do as part of the best solution for the enterprise. Elisa’s leadership made
Leader of the Future, the supervisors build development plans this whole thing possible.”
to promote application of their new skills.
Dana Dorcas, director of organizational
A PROCESS FOR learning at U.S. Cellular, who worked
DEVELOPMENT closely with Bannon to develop the pro-
In building Leader of the Future, gram, says that Bannon’s experience
Bannon and her colleagues reached out and perspective has contributed to her
to regional vice presidents and sales effectiveness.
leaders from the field, put together “She’s developed a lot of young leaders
focus groups, and gathered as much and she understands what it’s like, hav-
information as they could about what it ing come up through the ranks herself.
takes to be an effective frontline leader She brought that experience to talent
within U.S. Cellular and how leaders acquisition. She looks at the business
were being developed across the more holistically than a lot of HR lead-
organization. ers would.”
“When we collected everything they were using in the field to
THE LEADERSHIP TALENT THEY NEED
develop their associates, we found that our leaders were not
comfortable, confident, or consistent about their conversa- After the Leader of the Future program was first implement-
tions with their associates about their development.” ed in 2008, its impact was quickly visible in multiple areas.
Among the most important outcome was that the success rate
While Bannon and her colleagues could have dictated a cur- for the assessment jumped from 57 percent to 89 percent.
riculum of leadership development courses for Leader of the That means a larger pool of leadership talent and less time to
Future, they instead chose to concentrate on involving key fill a frontline leadership position. Bannon says that before
stakeholders and building consensus. the program it could take two to three months to fill a store
“When we started building the workshops, we pulled in sales manager position. Now, a position can be filled in less than
leaders from all four regions of the company. When we did 30 days.
pilots, we made sure that we had senior directors and directors While the Leader of the Future program opens the door to
of sales,” she says, adding that she sought the involvement of associates with potential to attain leadership positions,
skeptics as well as those who were readily on board. “We had Bannon points out that it also serves to discourage managers
all of the naysayers involved in the process, so then they from nominating associates for the program who lack leader-
became a part of it.” ship potential.
GO TO WORK
“We assessed less, but because we’re growing and developing our leaders of the future, we have been able to spend our dollars
In addition, the organization’s leadership acknowledges that the program has had a tremendous impact. Childs says that with
its focus on individual development as well as assessment, Leader of the Future has enabled U.S. Cellular to build a retail lead-
ership pipeline by spotting those individuals who should be fast-tracked.
Dorcas is even more enthusiastic.
“It has been overwhelmingly successful,” he says. “Without a doubt, those that have gone through the new approach are more
well-rounded than those who passed the assessment before Leader of the Future. It really gave us not only a higher assess-
ment success rate but it gave us a future leader with a more in-depth understanding of what’s going to be expected of them,
with less surprise and intimidation.”
That included Alumbreros who, through Leader of the Future, got the feedback, development, and preparation he needed to
pass the assessment in 2008, after not passing it previously.
“I got the feedback from DDI and that allowed me to prepare for the next time I went through the assessment,” he says.
“It was pretty awesome, knowing that you worked so hard to get where you want to be. And then to get that call that you
passed, it felt great.”
✪ To learn more about DDI’s assessment offerings, our Interaction Management®: Exceptional Leaders . . . Extraordinary Results® leadership development
system, and our new IM: ExP workforce development system, visit www.ddiworld.com/GO.
HOW TO... Sell a Talent Solution Internally
Elisa Bannon understood that part of her job in helping build the
Leader of the Future program was selling it to multiple stake-
holders within U.S. Cellular. The following defined her approach:
Involve those who aren’t on board. Not everyone initially sup-
ported Leader of the Future. Rather than avoid those individuals,
Bannon deliberately brought them into the building process. “It’s
very difficult if you’re a part of something to go out and say, hey,
this isn’t where we want to go. Because, guess what? You were
helping us get there.”
Be realistic and confident. Bannon won the support of U.S.
Cellular’s C-level leadership by proclaiming her confidence in the
ability of Leader of the Future to move the needle on the assess-
ment success rate. “We were realistic. We said, this is how much
we spent, this is the success rate, and this is what we think we
Make it a team effort. Lamart Clay, one of the sales directors
who worked with Bannon to build the program, cites her ability to
keep everyone focused on the greater good. “Elisa did a great
deal in pulling out the best in everyone who participated. She
made folks use specific examples, and she did a good job of just
giving people pats on the back.”
Primes a New Hire’s Fast Start
A Conversation with Bill Byham, Ph.D.
DDI’s chairman and CEO Bill Byham, Ph.D., has because they find out who’s done what and what
turned his attention and expertise to one of the tools and resources they can draw on. Also, given
most vexing problems organizations face when they hire that many times their manager is busy and may not provide
new people: How to get them up to speed and fully pro- complete information, a new hire can learn from others what
ductive as quickly as possible. He believes one of the answers the boss really wants and expects.”
is Courageous Networking, which is a central concept of the new sup- What can managers do to encourage Courageous Networking?
plementary Targeted Selection® course, Strong StartSM. “The manager should play a critical role by explaining what the per-
Because developing critical networking skills is so important in son needs to know to do the job successfully, by introducing the indi-
today’s workplace, it’s also the focus of two other new DDI courses: vidual to key people who need to be in their network, and by giving
Cultivating Networks and Partnerships, from our Business Impact the person assignments that require networking. Many people need
LeadershipSM: Mid-Level Series; and Networking for Enhanced a push to start networking. The manager needs to provide that push.”
Collaboration, part of the new Interaction Management®: Exceptional
At what job levels is Courageous Networking appropriate?
“All levels. The only difference will be the types of people with whom
What is Courageous Networking? the new hire will need to network. Those in entry-level jobs will need
“The idea is that when people start a new job, whether it’s with a to network with their immediate co-workers or with those who work
new organization or a new job with their current employer, they with their team. At the highest levels, the networking should be most-
need to build a network of people who can help them learn the ly with those from outside of the organization, such as key cus-
ropes, get things done, and show them how to accomplish their job tomers, suppliers, or those with whom the organization should
tasks. These might be the new hire’s fellow team members, but it explore strategic partnerships. Those in the middle levels should
also might be people from different parts of the organization, or strive to network with the right mix of internal and external people for
even from outside of the organization who can offer valuable infor- their job or role.”
mation or insights.
What are the biggest barriers that can get in the way of
“The reality, though, is that networking doesn’t come naturally to Courageous Networking?
some people, especially those who are reticent or not naturally gre- “As I said, the biggest barrier tends to be the personal attributes of
garious. To them, networking is a behavior that requires courage, as the individual. Courageous Networking doesn’t come naturally to
it takes them out of their comfort zone. That’s why I refer to it as everyone. Also, many times people just don’t want to admit that
Courageous Networking.” they need help, and that creates a barrier to their engaging
Why is Courageous Networking so critical for a new hire? in networking.”
“In today’s economy companies are reluctant to hire new people.
“Another barrier is that people simply don’t know with whom they
Meanwhile, work piles up that needs to get done. So, what employ-
need to network. That’s where the boss needs to step up, to help the
ers want more than anything, when they do hire a new person, is for
individual figure out who needs to be in their network. A lot of times,
the individual to come in and really start accomplishing something as
without that support and direction, the networking that new hires
soon as possible.
need to engage in just doesn’t happen.”
“Courageous Networking enables new hires to avoid needless mis-
✪ Visit www.ddiworld/GO to download the DDI white paper, Strong StartSM to
takes by having people who can guide them and with whom they can Job Success: What Leaders Can Do to Shorten Time to Proficiency, Increase
check things out. It also prevents them from reinventing the wheel, Job Engagement, and Reduce Early Turnover.
HOW A COURSE IS MADE:
BEHIND THE SCENES WITH IM: EXP
The end product can fit into a small box: facilitator guide, DVD, wall charts, participant workbooks and job aids.
Producing these little packages takes big effort. DDI’s team of writers, researchers, editors, graphic designers and subject
matter experts began producing the latest round of courses for the new series aimed at individual contributors, called
Interaction Management®: Exceptional Performers (IM: ExPSM) in early 2009. The development team invited GO readers to
travel along and get a peek at just what goes into developing a DDI course.
DDI associates test-drive
a new IM: ExP course
Dave Fisher on networking.
Manager, Research &
Product Development Bill Byham sits in on the
Janice Burns IM: ExP pilot session.
SKETCHING IT OUT
“It’s all driven by what our clients tell us they need and want,” “What you’re trying to do is create an engaging experience, and
says Jim Davis, DDI’s vice president of workforce and service present things in unique, interesting ways to get people think-
development. He manages the IM:ExP product line and is ing about the course topic, like videos, exercises, or activities
involved in every step of development. He led the charge to that go beyond lecturing,” says Fisher. “You also want to enable
gather clients’ thoughts, and evaluate current research as well people to figure things out on their own. Telling them what to
as market trends, which revealed that DDI’s existing offerings do won’t accomplish that. They have to see it, experience it,
for individual contributors needed to be retargeted at the right and feel it for it to be real and useful later in the real world.”
skills for today’s business climate.
The question the team is struggling with on this day is how to
Accountability for designing that new product ultimately lands start the course. It could begin with a video, but the team feels
with the manager of research and product development, Dave something more interactive is appropriate for the networking
Fisher. His team includes instructional designer Ric Anthony and topic. The team brainstorms an activity that challenges partic-
subject matter experts including Davis, senior vice president of ipants to identify others in their classroom who have specific
DDI’s Leadership Solutions Group Pete Weaver, and DDI chair- skills, such as writing or accounting knowledge, that are use-
man and CEO Bill Byham. They gather to discuss a new course ful to have in a network. Many more meetings take place to
on networking, and how to strike the best balance of learning shape other units of the course, but an engaging start is an
methods to help participants understand the topic effectively. important first step toward completion.
ASSEMBLING A COURSE The session goes smoothly—confirmation that the course content
It is Ric Anthony’s job to assimilate the outcome of the multi- is close to being finalized. At the end, participants offer their
ple rounds of meetings, discussions, and field tests into one comments and critiques. Directions for some of the exercises
cohesive course. Drawing on two decades of experience need clarification, but the video scripts are well received.
designing learning for adults, Anthony strives for courses And the participants feel their time as test subjects was worth-
that are “high impact, entertaining, easily-facilitated, and that while, equipping them with new ideas to strengthen their net-
develop skills and knowledge that are applicable on the job.” working skills.
A typical course goes through three to seven iterations, and
He’ll first draft the course overview, then when that’s finalized
there are significant changes made based on participant feed-
he works with the editorial team to produce participant work-
back. “We learn so much during these test runs,” says Fisher.
books, facilitator guides, and other supporting materials.
“Feedback from client pilots influences the course design,
Anthony also scripts the videos.
VP, Workforce &
When they aren’t busy working for
Hollywood, DDI employs Pittsburgh
actors, directors, camera crews,
make-up artists, and producers.
And as his courses reach further and wider across the globe, which ultimately affects other clients when they run the com-
Anthony has to keep specific challenges in mind. Each course pleted courses. The impact of their feedback is tremendous if
will be translated, and even when they are delivered in English, you think about it.”
learners are often not native speakers. “The challenge is to
deliver materials that are acceptable worldwide,” he says. “That SHOW TIME!
means avoiding ‘American-isms’ such as idioms or cultural With content solidified for the first four courses, Dave Fisher,
references. We even keep lists of names that are acceptable Ric Anthony, Jim Davis and the video producer and director
around the world.” gather to cast the videos. They wanted to be at this point a month
earlier, but a number of movies came to Pittsburgh to shoot. The
TRYING IT OUT result: both their crews and their actors were otherwise engaged.
Bright and early one fall morning, a dozen associates gather in Piles of headshots litter the table and line the room.
one of DDI’s training rooms. They’re testing a new IM: ExP
The team watches short clips of actors reading scripts from
course on networking. Several previous pilots held at first inter-
the networking course. “Too stage-y,” they say of one man
nally at DDI and later off-site at client organizations clued the
who spits out lines with theatrical flare. They crack up when
team in to what was working, and what wasn’t. On this day, the
another actor hams up a part by forming a gun with his thumb
team is running one last session, watching closely to refine the
and pointer finger, and mimes shooting it—totally inappropri-
scripts for the course’s videos. Fisher and Anthony act out the
ate for the role in question. Other actors shine on-screen, and
scripts during the session (a tad comical as the script features
the team’s decision is not whether to cast them, but which role
Younger or older. Black, white, Asian, and other races. Male,
and female. Diversity is a key consideration when casting the
29 roles needed for the upcoming shoot, and the team pays a
lot of attention to getting the right mix of on-screen talent.
A month later, the chosen actors report to the DDI offices in
Pittsburgh, where many of the videos for this series are shot.
This day, the team is shooting the video featuring two women
who are networking (the same scene Fisher and Anthony
acted out in pilot training for the course). A large meeting
room is converted into an office set, and it’s crowded with
lighting, sound, and videography experts. The rest of the team Wrap up: Tom Wilson at work editing the IM: ExP Networking DVD
watches the action on monitors from a room close by.
MAKING THE MOST IN POST
Over the years, shoots like this one have become more com-
Shoots for the first four videos wrap on time. The entourage
plicated. Videos will be dubbed into other languages and seen
of freelancers and avalanche of piles of video equipment are
around the world, and those viewers need to be able to relate
gone, leaving video editor Tom Wilson to cut together the
to the scenes on their screens. Text in English is a distraction.
footage. He’s been on DDI staff as an editor for over two
Shooting with high definition cameras, the picture quality is
decades, and DDI’s clients see his work on the screen nearly
every time they watch a video.
“People will learn things that not only help them Wilson thinks the DDI training video is a genre all its own,
be better at their jobs, but be better people.” best described as an “industrial soap opera.” The scenes he
cuts are a hybrid of instructional and entertaining. Wilson
so good that even small words are legible so the crew works applies his technical expertise in the edit room. Using scripts,
hard to find props without type. Quite a feat when one con- notes on takes from the director and a suite of high-tech dig-
siders a typical office is covered in memos, books, binders, ital editing tools, Wilson manipulates the footage to convey
and even coffee cups with words all over them. the behaviors each course aims to teach. At the same time, he
uses editing tricks and techniques to make the videos as
And then there’s the challenge of shooting training videos.
engaging or approachable as what airs on “real” TV.
“Representing perfect, positive models of the right behaviors
often means the performance feels forced,” says Fisher. “I honestly believe it helps. I make an impact,” says Wilson
Getting just the right performance is tricky. For example on of his work. “People will learn things that not only help them
another shoot day, a scene features a coworker giving feed- be better at their jobs, but be better people.”
back to his peer on her performance in a meeting. The deliv-
ery of one line needs to sound reassuring, but the actor comes
across as flippant when he emphasizes the wrong word. The
scene is shot upwards of a dozen times before the team is happy.
“This is why we are so involved in producing our videos,”
says Davis. “We’re on the set every second, looking for spe-
cific words and actions, and we’ll keep shooting until we get
Getting it Printed: (L to R) Steve Horton, Pat Corboy, Andy
Betchoski, and Rick Hamilton, part of the CSI Printing Team.
Press and Shipping Inventory
It takes a village: Above are just a few of the people who print, copy, collate, bind, count, and ship to our clients.
The CSI staff is a model of a high-functioning, empowered,
self-directed team. For example, they ship about 3,000 cartons
of material each month, and 99.9 percent of all orders ship on
“Even when clients hold licenses that enable them to print
their own materials, they often still use CSI for printing and
distribution because of the exceptional value they provide,”
WHERE DOES THIS STORY END?
At peak times, our state-of-the-art iGen has printed over one It’s likely that you know the end of this story better than we do.
million pages in a single month.
DDI courses, like those in the new IM:ExP series, are delivered
to thousands of learners in hundreds of organizations around
PRINT IT, PACK IT UP
the globe. Many of our programs are translated into multiple
Little known fact: DDI owns a printing and distribution facil- languages for use in organizations big and small.
ity. It’s housed in a large warehouse about ten miles away
“It begins and ends with clients,” says Fisher. “We start by
from the corporate headquarters in Canonsburg, a suburb of
looking at their needs for their workforces. What skills do their
Pittsburgh. When the videos wrap and the workbook goes
people need? These courses, when finished, reach thousands
through the last of many rounds of reviewing, editing, design-
and thousands of people in organizations around the world,
ing, and proofing, the staff of about 30 experts at “CSI”
enhancing productivity, effectiveness, and interpersonal skills,
(Customer Service Inc.) take over.
both professionally and personally, too. I never imagined I’d
CSI includes a call center for materials orders, a shipping and be in a position where what I do has such global impact, but it
distribution staff, and printing experts. DDI owns a printing does. And that’s a good feeling.”
company largely because it’s hard to find a collection of pro-
✪ To learn about the IM: ExP series, visit www.ddiworld.com/GO.
fessionals all under one roof who can print a flawless wall
chart, bind hundreds of workbooks, and provide the level of
customer service demanded by an organization that trains
other companies on delivering excellent customer service.
WHAT’S GOING DDI Presents the Asia Talent
Management Award at the CNBC
Asia Business Leaders Awards 2009
In November DDI senior vice president Rich Wellins, Ph.D.,
DDI senior vice president Rich Wellins, Ph.D., takes center
presented the Asia Talent Management Award to Tan Pheng
stage to present the Asia Talent Managment Award.
Hock, CEO of ST Engineering at CNBC’s 8th Asia Business
Leaders Awards in Singapore. The Asia Talent Management
Award is given to a leader whose company values its work-
force and is committed to developing, retaining, and nurturing
the next generation of leaders.
CNBC pioneered the Business Leaders Awards worldwide
to acknowledge exceptional CEOs globally. Every year since
2004, DDI has worked as CNBC’s research partner to identify,
assess, and recognize leaders who have contributed and
shaped the Asian economy.
DDI congratulates all the finalists and winners of the 8th Asia
Business Leaders Awards 2009.
✪ Visit www.ddiworld.com/GO for more information about the awards.
DDI introduces best-in-class
development for every
DDI, the leader in assessment and development innovation, introduces two new systems that now give you
development for all levels—from individual contributors through executives. Our synergistic solutions build
on and reinforce one another as your employees progress in their careers.
Start developing your talent pipeline from end to end!
Call 1.800.933.4463 or go to www.ddiworld.com/developmentinnovation to learn more.
TOP DDI Named to Top
20 20 Leadership
Recognizing Top Talent Down Under DDI was named a Top 20 Leadership Training
Company by TrainingIndustry.com. The “Top 20”
DDI once again teamed up with AFR BOSS magazine to
list includes those leaders in the training indus-
name Australia’s Young Executives of the Year. Entrants
try that have demonstrated experience and
had to be ages 35 years or younger. Ten candidates were
excellence in providing leadership training serv-
interviewed by a judging panel and put through a DDI
ices to a variety of clients.
day-in-the-life Assessment Center to determine their ability
to handle challenging scenarios. All finalists received Criteria for selection included breadth of pro-
detailed feedback on their assessments. The six finalists grams and audiences served, delivery methods
were chosen from this group. Visit www.ddiworld.com/GO offered, geographic reach, and experience in
for a list of winners and the article that appeared in AFR serving the market. View the full list at www.ddi-
Want to Stay Up-to-Date?
You can hear about the latest research and talent management trends if you connect with DDI via social media outlets.
Follow DDI on Twitter or become our friend on Facebook. Sign up at www.ddiworld.com/GO.
Business Impact Leadership : Interaction Management®:
Mid-Level Series Exceptional Performers
Nine courses enable your mid-level leaders to master the Eight courses help you drive collaboration, increase
challenges they face in driving business performance: productivity and engage your individual contributors:
• Coaching for High Performance • Communicating with Impact
• Cultivating Networks and Partnerships • Embracing Change
• Developing Organizational Talent • High-Impact Feedback and Listening
• Handling Challenging Situations with Courage • Navigating Beyond Conflict
• Influencing for Organizational Impact • Networking for Enhanced Collaboration
• Making Change Happen • Taking the HEAT
• Mastering Emotional Intelligence (EQ) • Valuing Differences
• Operating with a Global Perspective • Working as a High-Performing Team
• Translating Strategy into Results
The Talent Management Expert
THE STORY CONTINUES...
DDI’s history is a 40-year story of forward-thinking, responsiveness, and innovation to meet
our clients’ emerging needs. Our latest innovations, some of which you can read more about
elsewhere in this issue of GO, reinforce our standing as Talent Management innovators.
............. Giving Individual
Contributors a Leg Up
Interaction Management®: Exceptional
Making Everyone More
Effective and Productive
Performers Series (IM: ExPSM)—This new Building Networking Skills—Networking
system targets your organization’s value is an important skill that provides numerous
creators—your individual contributors. IM: real benefits for organizations and their
is designed to boost interpersonal people—more partnering and collaboration,
skills that enhance individual and group improved knowledge sharing, faster job
effectiveness, and build customer service proficiency, etc. DDI has introduced three
skills. The skills covered in the series’ new courses that help develop business
eight brand new courses include networking skills at multiple organizational
Mid- and Senior-level
Networking, Communicating, Listening levels. These courses are:
Leadership Development to
Drive Better Strategy Execution and Feedback, Embracing Change, and
• Targeted Selection®: Strong StartSM.
Valuing Differences. With all new videos,
Business Impact LeadershipSM—We support guides for the leaders of learn- • Networking for Enhanced Collaboration,
understand the challenges mid- and ers—including guidance for leveraging part of the Interaction Management®:
senior-level leaders face and their critical Modern Media for skill application—IM: Exceptional Performers Series (IM: ExP).
responsibilities in creating and executing ExP enables your team members to confi- • Cultivating Networks and Partnerships,
business strategy. Now, we have applied dently work together to drive your organi- one of the courses in the Business
this knowledge to create two highly engag- zation’s bottom line. Impact Leadership: Mid-Level Series.
ing new programs just for them. Business
Impact LeadershipSM: Mid-Level Series Go Virtual with Frontline Taking Hiring to the Next Level
offers a suite of nine high-impact courses Development
Strong Start and Interviewing for
that provide mid-level leaders with skills
Interaction Management®: Exceptional Technical Skills—Two innovative new
and insights in critical areas such as
Leaders . . . Extraordinary Results® courses make the Targeted Selection
driving performance in a changing world,
(IM: EX®) Virtual Classroom—A new interviewing system even more powerful.
managing horizontal integration, leading
“must have” for blended training implemen- Strong Start provides leaders with valuable
and developing talent, and making tough
tations, DDI’s breakthrough approach to insights and a process to help new hires
decisions. Business Impact LeadershipSM:
the Virtual Classroom will help you circum- begin contributing quickly, get and keep
Senior-Level Series, meanwhile, enables
vent travel restrictions to deliver the train- them engaged in the job, and position
your organization to create continuous
ing your leaders need now. DDI’s nine them for success. Targeted Selection:
learning experiences—linked directly to
IM: EX® Virtual Classroom training courses Interviewing for Technical Skills, mean-
business needs—for your executive level.
are specifically designed to engage partici- while, enables interviewers to determine
The combination of Business Impact pants in discussion, small group activities, if candidates possess the knowledge and
Leadership and the Interaction and skill practice through Web-conferenc- skills required to be effective in a position
Management® system for frontline leaders ing software. Perfect for geographically requiring a high level of technical expertise,
and individual contributors means that dispersed leadership groups or intact such as an engineer, a nurse, an account-
DDI now provides a complete portfolio of teams, DDI’s Virtual Classroom will deliver ant, or a computer programmer.
assessment and development offerings the same behavior change as instructor-led To learn more about these latest DDI innovations,
spanning the entire leadership pipeline! or self-paced Web-based courses. visit www.ddiworld.com/GO
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DDI’S MORE THAN 1,000 ASSOCIATES AROUND THE WORLD are utives ha
and excited to celebrate four decades of business—and looking forward to many
s across more. Included here are just some snapshots of our worldwide staffs. DDI
nd North Headquarters resides in Pittsburgh. It’s here that we research and develop
s that off
ment our new products, and support a breathtaking array of industry-leading talent
ve, like th management solutions. Our facilities house, among other things, a high-tech
which b assessment center, a full service printing facility, an interactive showcase of
custom work we’ve done for clients, and a corporate library and resource
center that supports all facets of DDI’s business.
DDI World Headquarters, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Our DDI China operations have realized strong growth
successfully penetrated the local Chinese market. Thi
a staff of over 50
own to include owned Chinese enterprises that benefit from our talent
DDI India has gr hundred senior
ver three years, ss India. Seven the development of new products specifically designe
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40 Years: Many
Reasons to Celebrate! We have helped YOU
Forty years in business is worth celebrating. But what
have a real impact!
excites us most are the great results we’ve been able
to help you achieve, the wonderful feedback you have BOEING, Alabama Industrial Development
Training, screened more than 11,000 production
given us, and the number of people around the world whose
and maintenance candidates, tested over 7,000,
work lives we have touched over the past four decades.
assessed more than 3,000—and realized an 80
to 90 percent hiring success rate at the interview
HCA implemented integrated, behavioral compe-
tency-based selection and performance manage-
ment systems across the organization. Among its
results: turnover fell from 29 percent to 12 percent
within 12 months, employee retention improved by
more than 42.3 percent, and cost savings improved
by 26.7 percent.
INFOSYS transitioned to a more strategic sales
force and tripled sales revenues within three years,
from $1 billion to $3 billion. In addition, Infosys
doubled its sales force productivity with just a 30-
percent increase in sales force headcount.
JETBLUE decreased its total turnover to half the
industry average—and just 2 to 3 percent for
pilots—by revising its selection process.
PHILIPS deployed a unified core leadership devel-
opment curriculum to more than 11,000 leaders in
35 countries, and realized greater cost efficiencies
by working with a single vendor.
SANOFI-AVENTIS sourced, screened, and hired
more than 1,000 top-notch sales professionals in
120 days while reducing hiring costs by more than
YOU have helped us Partnerships with YOU YOU have helped us
amass some impressive that make a difference become an industry
numbers! “DDI is an excellent partner, always leader!
• Trained and developed nearly 10 meeting our needs and responsive. “Bottom Line–if a company is looking
million executives and leaders They provide leading-edge solutions, for a partner that offers ‘soup to nuts’ in
worldwide. and it's apparent that understanding our terms of content, services and assess-
business is important to DDI.” ments related to leadership develop-
• 3,200 high-quality hiring decisions are
Cindy Phillips, Amedisys Home Health ment, DDI is the right choice.”
made every hour using our behavioral
Bersin & Associates,
interviewing, testing, and assessment
“I feel that I’m working with the High Impact Leadership Development
leaders in the industry.” (2009)
• 1,500 leaders benefit from one or Lucille Cordero,
more of our leadership training or Municipio Autonomo de Caguas “DDI’s leadership development clients
assessment systems every day. are 14 percent more likely than their
“I am very impressed with the materials. counterparts to increase managerial
• Major corporations make crucial
Everything we’ve used has been excel- performance.”
promotion and placement decisions
lent. DDI understands where we need Aberdeen Group,
for over 3,000 senior executives
to go, shows flexibility, and adapts to Research Brief (2010)
each year using our assessment
centers—in Singapore, Beijing,
London, Mumbai, New York, and
Niagara Health System
other locations around the world.
It Pays Off
By Jazmine Boatman, Ph.D. | Senior Consultant, DDI Center for Applied Behavioral Research
DDI’s Center for Applied Behavioral Research Significant Improvement
(CABER) recently aggregated the research DDI has Overall, we found that before leaders attended their
conducted since 2006 examining the value of leadership development program, they and their observers gave only
development programs. The development offerings examined a little over half of their skills top ratings (54 percent and 55
consisted of courses from DDI’s Interaction Management®: percent, respectively). After attending the DDI training pro-
Exceptional Leaders... Extraordinary Results® (IM: EX®) system. grams, this rose to 85 percent for self-ratings and 72 percent for
The tool used to collect information for this study was DDI’s observer ratings. These increases demonstrate that leadership
Training CheckpointSM, which evaluates leaders’ behaviors both development is clearly making a difference and improving lead-
before and after they’ve attended a development program. ers’ on-the-job skills (57 percent)—to the extent that even others
are able to report significant improvements (31 percent).
This study focuses on 22 organizations that evaluated their
leadership development programs between 2006 and 2009. Behavior Change
as a Result of
These programs contained at least three—and up to 15—courses Leadership
from DDI’s IM: EX program; the majority of development Development
programs consisted of four courses.
For this survey a total of 2,132 leaders evaluated their organi-
zation’s leadership development program. Also providing per-
spectives on the results of the leadership development efforts
were 3,550 observers of the leaders who attended the programs,
consisting primarily of their managers, coworkers, and direct
Each of the individual courses examined targeted a set of spe-
cific behaviors. Development, of course, is aimed at changing
behaviors. Thus, it was the focus of this study.
Percent Often or Almost Always
Self-Rating of Behavior Change Self-ratings of behavior change varied depending on the level of
In addition to overall behavior changes, this study examined the leader. In fact, lower-level leaders showed more improve-
behavior change stemming from each of DDI’s IM: EX® ment than those in higher levels. Non-management reported 84
courses, from the perspectives of both the leader and their percent improvement, first-level management reported 68 per-
observers. The following chart displays the before and after cent improvement, middle management reported 44 percent
ratings that leaders made for the 13 courses. Across the improvement, and senior management reported 27 percent
board, regardless of initial skill levels, they reported signifi- improvement (see figure below).
cant improvements in their proficiency in critical leadership
skills. The bottom line: IM: EX® really works!
Behavior Change by Course
Observer Ratings of Behavior Change
Similar to the findings from the leaders’ self-reported
improvements, the course with the highest ratings according
to observers, both before and after the training, was Building
an Environment of Trust. The most improvement stemmed
from Achieving Your Leadership Potential (63 percent
improvement), a course in which leaders learn to link their
development to personal satisfaction and their organization’s
After Training Before Training
goals as well as to identify their own strengths and weaknesses.
Resolving Conflict and Reviewing Performance Progress also
Leaders Improved Most Where They Needed it Most
showed marked improvement after training (both improved
Several of the courses in which leaders believe they improved 52 percent) from the observers’ perspectives.
the most after the training were the ones in which they had the
most room to improve. The course with the most improvement This study demonstrates that leadership development makes a
was Resolving Conflict (94 percent improvement between the real difference in leaders’ behaviors. Such improvements,
before and after ratings), followed by Delegating for Results which have positive implications for those with whom leaders
(85 percent improvement). Resolving Conflict helps leaders work, can favorably impact the business and the organiza-
recognize when a conflict is escalating and minimize damage tion’s bottom line. This study looks deeper at the factors that
by using the most appropriate resolution tactic. As the chart affect behavior changes after development, factors such as
above indicates, only 36 percent of leaders reported being able accountability, tenure, and opportunities for application.
to resolve conflict effectively before attending the program; ✪ To download the full impact analysis study, from which this piece was
yet, afterward this figure almost doubled to 70 percent. excerpted, visit www.ddiworld.com/GO.
TRENDTRACKER Telling Number:
Discontent in the Workforce
A recent DDI survey of more than 1,000 individual contributors found that half feel their
jobs are stagnant, and one in three do just their jobs, nothing more. These are among
Percent of workers who feel
the findings captured in Pulse of the Workforce: 2009 Survey of Individual Contributors, their interpersonal skills are
“very good” or “excellent”—
a study that sought to explore the mindset of today’s workers. Some of the specific well below the 65 percent
results captured in the study are below. Visit www.ddiworld.com/GO to download the full who rate their technical skills
Pulse of the Workforce report.
Source: Pulse of the Workforce study.
Fifty-one percent of respondents said they feel
stagnant, when asked how they feel about their
current jobs. Asked how they would classify their
situations at work, the most popular answer was
that they have no room to advance.
Do you want to be promoted to a leadership position?
wants to lead
Sixty-two percent of individual contributors
surveyed have no aspiration to assume a
management role—one of the few things
both stagnant and contented workers
generally agree on. Interestingly, content-
ed workers were more likely to say “no” to
leadership; with 68 percent eschewing a
formal role leading others, compared to
just 55 percent of stagnant workers.
What phrase best describes your attitude about your job?
phoning it in
Individual contributors are poorly
engaged in their jobs. We asked our
sample what phrase best describes
their attitude about their jobs.
The top answer:
“Just do my job
and go home.”