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Focused Leaders
Quickly Move Up

The Science of Selecting
High-Performing Leaders

Focused Leaders Quickly Move Up

Focused Leaders:

Become high potentials. Leaders identified as high potentials scored higher in the assessment in important competencies such as Financial Acumen (+21 percent), Operational Decision Making (+11 percent), and Establishing Strategic Direction (+24 percent) vs. those rated as low potential.

Are more likely to be promoted. After being assessed, 36 percent of high scorers were eventually promoted vs. only 28 percent of low scorers. Further, higher assessment scores in specific competencies were also associated with a higher likelihood of promotion.

Advance based on well-informed decisions. Based on assessment scores, leaders who were promoted following assessment performed an average of 20 percent higher in their strength areas than leaders who were not promoted. Leaders promoted despite lower assessment scores performed an average of 17 percent lower in these performance areas than leaders who were not promoted.

More than ever, organizations are challenged to promote leaders into higher-level roles—often before they are fully ready to perform. Our research indicates that future leadership quality has remained consistently weak since 2011: Only 15 percent of HR professionals rank their future bench as strong. In response to this gap in ready-now talent, organizations often use a pipeline approach across all leadership levels. DDI assessments can ensure the sustainability of this approach, by consistently predicting leader performance and growth. Across numerous studies, high scorers are more likely to perform well, improve performance, and be identified as high potentials. One study participant, a global chemicals manufacturer, saw 90 percent of its assessed leaders successfully transition into roles with greater responsibility.

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