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WCI, Inc
May 12, 2023

Emerging Leaders

MRA’s latest Hot Topic Survey on Emerging Leaders shows that more than half of organizations (62 percent) identify emerging leaders. With such a competitive job market, along with changing workforce demographics and developing business needs, organizations are looking within and identifying emerging leaders to play a vital role.

“By investing in developing emerging leaders, organizations can proactively address talent shortages, build a pipeline of capable leaders, and position themselves for success,” said Jim Morgan, Vice President, Business Development and Workforce Strategies.

According to MRA’s survey, respondents suggest the top three reasons to identify emerging leaders are:

1. Career development for high achievers (86 percent);

2. Succession planning (81 percent); and

3. Maintain our culture (52 percent).

Identifying emerging leaders can happen organically, but it often requires a systematic approach. Based on survey results, the top five criteria of emerging leaders are:

1. High performer (91 percent);

2. High potential (90 percent);

3. Demonstrates motivation and desire to grow in their career (88 percent);

4. Behavior aligns with organizational values (80 percent); and

5. Team player (80 percent).

MRA’s survey provides the top opportunities for growth that an employer can offer their emerging leaders:

1. External training or classes (78 percent);

2. Mentoring (65 percent);

3. One-on-one meetings (65 percent); and

4. Cross-training (64 percent).

Forty-one percent of responding organizations would like to start an emerging leaders program but have not due to a lack of resources (47 percent), other priorities (38 percent), or are unsure of their organization’s emerging leaders strategy (38 percent).

Defining what your organization finds critical in leadership is important to help the organization succeed. These competencies may include communication skills, strategic thinking, adaptability, team building, and decision-making abilities. At the same time, these traits should align with the organization’s values, culture, and strategic goals. Other factors to consider may include high performers, those with the potential for growth, employees who are willing to take on new challenges, the ability to influence others, and the demonstration of leadership behaviors. The criteria should be objective and measurable to ensure fairness and consistency in the identification process.

According to MRA’s survey, 31 percent of organizations have seen an increase in employee retention since identifying emerging leaders. “When done correctly, an emerging leader program can offer employees opportunities for growth, development, recognition, relationship building, and leadership support, and contribute to their organizational commitment, all of which can contribute to improved employee retention rates,” added Morgan.

How WCI can help your organization develop your emerging leaders:

1. Our Supervisory Development program offers 24 half-day training sessions that are in-person, interactive, and very effective for many WCI members.

2. Our eLearning platform offers hundreds of management training programs that are online, flexible, and very cost effective.

Source: MRA – The Management Association.

From WCI's HR Answers Now ©2023 CCH Incorporated and its affiliates. All rights reserved.

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