Article: Leading the right way

A Brand Reachout InitiativeTalent Management

Leading the right way


FedEx: A case of developing good managers and customized programs for individual contributors
Leading the right way

FedEx has instituted a special workshop called ‘Is Management for Me?’ for employees to help decide if a career in FedEx management is a desirable and realistic option for them


For an individual to become a successful leader, both ‘skill’ and ‘will’ are the two most important elements that are needed. Unlike many companies, for FedEx, the identification of people managers begins at the interviewing stage itself for external hires and is an ongoing process for existing employees.

FedEx has instituted a special workshop called ‘Is Management for Me?’ for employees to help decide if a career in FedEx management is a desirable and realistic option for them. Through the workshop, team members who are interested in management roles build awareness on what is expected of them to transition from a non-management role to a management role.

Post the workshop, the candidates must go through a comprehensive management development program called i-LEAD followed by a panel evaluation for management candidature readiness. This program is mandatory if internal employees are applying for a managerial post. Coaches also play an integral role in the i-LEAD program, with equal emphasis on subject matter experts.

The i-LEAD program follows a step-by-step approach:

· i-Look: In this phase, an employee explores the management role at FedEx and reflects on the motivation levels for taking a managerial role

· i-Evaluate: In this phase, the employee evaluates the readiness and understanding of management

· i-Assess: Here, the employee assesses the skills, knowledge, competencies to determine the abilities and development areas

· i-Develop: Employees are expected to work through a structured individual development plan with support from their i-LEAD coach and manager

Post the implementation of the development plan, the employee along with the coach decides the readiness to attend the i-LEAD panel review. The panel, which consists of Managing Directors and/or senior managers experienced in recruiting managers, evaluates the readiness of the candidate. Post the interview, the panel puts forth one of the two recommendations: Either the candidate is eligible for an open management position OR the candidate is advised additional development and asked to reappear for a second panel review. During the period of 2013-14, 11 i-LEAD panels have been facilitated wherein 22 participants were reviewed. Twelve were endorsed for i-LEAD and the rest were asked to go for additional development. More than 50 per cent of the endorsed candidates have moved into management roles in the organization.

FedEx not only provides structured development opportunities for management roles, but also for high potential individual contributors in the form of company’s LEAD Individual Contributor Program. The LEAD IC Program is a 10-month leadership development program that is geared towards developing individual contributors who are asked to lead visible and high-impact initiatives. The program focuses on:

· Developing Leadership Competencies

· Analysis, Problem Solving and Decision Making

· Leadership, Employee Direction and Developing Organizational Talent

· Teamwork & Customer/Interpersonal Relations

· Relationship Versatility

· Communication Skills

· Adaptability Business Planning, Organizing & Scheduling, Strategy & Execution and Leadership Agility

· Influencing Skills and Avoiding/Resolving Conflict

FedEx believes that every manager is an HR manager. Outstanding people managers are recognized for their individual accomplishments with ‘The Five Star Award’. One of the key elements to be recognized as a high potential talent is to be able to demonstrate proficiency in people leadership competencies such as influence and inspire, build collaborative networks and talent development. Two main processes are part of this high potential identification: Survey Feedback Action scores and Caliper Assessment. The SFA scores are reflective of direct feedback of survey respondents on their manager on management and people leadership capabilities. On the other hand, the managers undergo the Caliper Assessment, a psychometric test, which assesses on the personality of the candidate and matches it to the job. Both the scores have an impact on the overall potential standing of a manager.  






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Topics: Talent Management, #HiPoWeek, #HiPoLibrary

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