Emerging Leaders Make Their Mark

Background: Big Pharma company wants to use stretch goal of reducing supply chain costs to develop future leaders. Seven high potential "future leaders" selected from across the organization with diverse backgrounds, including manufacturing, quality, human resources, analytics, finance, and marketing. Assigned to project full time. Goal stated as "reduce manufacturing costs by 30 percent". A&R retained as team coach in both team-building and analysis.

Application: A&R blends elements from Collaboration, Offsite Facilitation, and Rapid Prototype Modeling programs to address.Approach: Clarified shared goal and addressed resistance to stretch goal. Identified strengths for each individual and assigned appropriate roles. Determined strategy to address the challenge, protocols for how to work, activity tracking methods. Went through team stages: forming, storming, norming and performing. Individuals deeply engaged in creative problem solving and analysis for over one year. Many opportunities for cost reduction, sufficient to reach the goal, identified and presented to senior management. Process learnings clarified and documented.

Results: Ideas initially met resistance from manufacturing, but many recommendations eventually implemented under new manufacturing management; resistance provided change management insights for team members. Numerous team members promoted into new roles. Twelve years after project completed, team members still meet periodically to celebrate experience, revisit "lesson’s learned" and discuss how the project has affected their career in positive way.

Meaningful dialogue on barriers can be challenging to achieve as old discussion familiar patterns where listening is challenging becasue we "know" the viewpoint of others.

Use Rapid Prototype Modeling to answer important "what if" questions