After two mergers greatly increased Numerica’s total number of members (to 81,000), employees (to 300), and branch locations (to 17)—with more expansion planned—the credit union’s executive team determined that a formal leadership training program was needed to better position the organization for the future. There were two primary goals for this program. One was to have a formalized program so leaders could speak the same language and build a similar toolbox of leadership skills. Also, Numerica’s executive team wanted a best-in-class program that would provide a competitive edge in recruiting talent and boosting employee retention.
The solution? Management in MOTION, a robust training program with a breadth and sophistication rivaling those implemented in many Fortune 500 organizations. Each year up to 15 employees are selected by the executive team to take part in the program. Once they accept the invitation into Management in MOTION, participants commit to a three-year curriculum. The first year, participants complete nine half-day DDI courses, at a rate of one to two courses per month. Classes include Essentials of Leadership, High-Impact Feedback, and Positive Communication & Diversity. Conference calls aimed at reinforcing development are held during non-classroom months. The second year includes four DDI courses, including Leading High-Performance Teams and Networking for Enhanced Collaboration, and two from Numerica’s Supervisor Series—a curriculum of courses open to all Numerica leaders, whether they are in the Management in MOTION program or not—for a total of six half-day classes plus conference calls. In the third and final year, students go through the DDI courses Influential Leadership, Leading Change, Boosting Business Results, and Supporting Leadership Development. They write a thesis paper on leadership and act as mentors for the incoming class. The Management in MOTION curriculum is modified as needed. For example, training on industry-related issues, such as strategic forecasting, was added to the third year of classes to augment soft skills.
The Management in MOTION program has had a positive impact on Numerica’s ability to recruit talent and retain valued employees. A pipeline of leadership talent has been established, making it easier for open leadership positions to be filled with qualified internal candidates. Skill levels and the performance of leaders have increased significantly, and a culture of more open communication and collaboration is emerging. In addition, the organization has the leadership talent it needs to drive future growth.