The Pipeline to a Great Leadership Team

The Pipeline to a Great Leadership Team

Great leadership needs a constant flow of strategically developed personnel to keep it filled in almost every organization. It is essential to give advanced plans for how key management and leadership positions are filled in your organization. Much like a sales pipeline, a leadership pipeline includes your database of employees at various stages of becoming leadership-ready. As your company grows or transitions occur by attrition, reduction of workforce, or death, you can search your pipeline of people to promote or move cross functionally to fill the gaps.

Strategic managers recognize that their organization’s leadership skills gap continues to widen.  They have given consideration to a plan for how they will solve this critical issue. Focusing on their leadership pipeline where they currently have talent that can fill gaps is the key. Looking at their inventory of people, they can immediately recognize areas they need to either develop skills or hire additional talent.

A simple but effective thought process develops a leadership pipeline that lists all your employees and placing each employee in one of four groupings:

Executive leadership:  continual learner, communication skills, strategic thinking, business acumen, forward thinking, coaching and mentoring skills, role model for others.

Middle Management:  sharpen fundamental skills of leadership, strong planning skills, business acumen to ensure they are prioritizing efficiently, performance management to ensure clear responsibilities and answerabilities, decision making skills to move up to the next level

Entry Level: Focus on fundamentals of leadership, often promoted to this position due to excellence in technical skills but have not been developed in leadership skills, they need to be mentored and see what good leadership looks like from above

Team Members: The future of your management and leadership team; start them in a mentoring program that can later lead into a more formal leadership development program

Development programs include:


The relationship between the coach and the participant is built on a foundation of trust and requires a good personality match. Career Development Partners seeks to match the coach and the participant.


Could consist of a brief meeting to bounce ideas, or an in-depth dive to address an area of development which may include a 360-degree assessment. What challenge is holding back your key leaders?


Perhaps a star performer has one area that continues to hold them back and with the help of a coach, they could achieve their full potential.


Helping a challenged employee turn around can be a worthwhile investment, it demonstrates your commitment to contributing to a leader’s success.


Short version – Newly promoted leaders face special challenges. Coaching can provide support to a senior leader moving into a new position to ensure a smooth transition.

Longer version – Executives who take on a new position, whether promoted from within or hired from outside, are finding that the honeymoon is over quickly these days. Expectations are on the rise while the window for achieving results is narrowing. Assimilation coaching is one of the most effective means of compressing the learning curve and enhancing the probability of success for those taking on new roles.

Good leaders keep the pipeline full of leaders and potential leaders.  If I can help you to think through your pipeline and help you develop a plan for your people, let me know.

Travis Jones - CEO of Career Development PartnersTRAVIS JONES CEO

Travis has been an entrepreneur and business owner in Tulsa for over 30 years. He is a certified Life Options Retirement Coach and is certified to facilitate and deliver the Manager As Coach Learning Series (MACLS) through CPI. He is also a certified Career Coach and DiSC Certified . He previously served on the board of Career Partners International (CPI) an equity partner in CPI, offering a global reach with over 350 offices


Travis Jones - CEO of Career Development Partners

Written By Travis Jones

Travis has been an entrepreneur and business owner in Tulsa for over 30 years. He is a well-known community servant and is dedicated to providing world-class service for everyone we encounter at Career Development Partners.

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