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Read time9 mins

Develop and recruit future leaders with high performance modelling

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A group of five professionally dressed adults posing and smiling for a portrait of future leaders.

A guide to high performance modelling for future leaders

Explore the world of high-performance modelling and revolutionise your approach to leadership recruitment and development.

High-performance modelling (HPM) for future leaders starts with identifying outstanding individuals with leadership potential within your organisation, and profiling these high performers using psychometric testing and observational interviews.

The results are used to create a benchmark for both hiring employees with leadership potential and also developing the leadership skills of existing staff members.

Identifying the right individuals is key to the success of HPM, and needs to be a combination of an individual’s performance and their alignment with the organisational goals.

High-performance modelling is a robust, scientific, and straightforward method to pinpoint and nurture the next generation of leaders.

Harness high-performance modelling for effective leadership

Watch the video to understand how you can use high-performance modelling to identify the ideal traits of effective leaders in your organisation, and then apply these insights to staff recruitment and development.

Step 5 - Common traits of disability sector employees

Step 3 - How to recruit the leaders of the future

If you know of anyone who would benefit from this video, please share it with them.

A scientific approach to modelling leadership success

Hi, Andrew Marty from SACS, and welcome to video number four in our six videos sequence relating to disability sector leaders of the future, how to recruit and how to develop them.

And this one is about a thing called high performance modelling.

And the concept of high performance modelling is all about can you identify some high-quality people in your organisation who are acting as leaders of the future, the sorts of leaders that you’re going to need into the future, can you then profile them and recruit against them?

Now, this is a very scientifically valid, a way of creating the leaders of the future, and it can be used for both recruitment purposes and development purposes.

So, this is video number four and in this video we’ll be talking about high-performance modelling, in the next one we’ll show you some data on the disability sector and how that relates to leadership, in other words, we’ve got data based on thousands of people that we’ve psyched tested in the disability sector.

And video number six will be about development of leaders within the disability sector.

So, firstly, this diagram explains the concept of high-performance modelling (refer to the video).

And the model of high-performance modelling is where you identify a group of exemplars high performers within the organisation, and what they need to achieve, their key result areas, their outcomes.

So, the idea here is that if you seek to identify leaders of the future, you can do it a couple of ways.

One is that you can theorise about it, you can try to anticipate what the leader of the future will need to look like.

This is a very fraught exercise and it’s often wrong.

You can also borrow from the world of research and identify characteristics that are typically known to apply to leaders, and that’s a good idea.

And certainly we help organisations to do that all the time.

But if you want to have your leadership profile to be targeted specifically to your organisation, there is no better way of doing it than picking out high-performing leaders right now and profiling them.

Choosing your high performers

Now, how do you decide who is a high performing leader and show that the choice of the group that you’re going to psych test and competency interview is very crucial for this to be a worthwhile exercise.

And it really comes down to two things.

One, are they doing a good job, second, are they the type of person that we want to have around in this organisation?

Now, based on those two characteristics high-performing and a cultural exemplar, we find most organisations can decide quite rapidly, but yes, if you’re going to do this, you probably need to build a governance process about who will make that decision and how the decision will be made.

So, once you’ve identified this high-performing leaders then you’ve got to do two things, one is that you’re going to psych test them to see what psychological characteristics they have in common.

And most of the time you will also want to behaviourally interview them and so what we do is that we undertake a competency interview.

We look for the skills, the knowledge, the values and attitudes that these high-performers have.

And out of all of that, you distill what’s called a high-performance model.

And so you use the psych test results and the competency interview results to identify people who are able to fulfill that high-performing leader characteristic.

And once you’ve got this, this is an incredible useful piece of intellectual property for recruitment purposes, but also for succession planning.

Recruitment through the psych tests and some of the behavioural interview questions that come out of the competency and analysis exercise.

This will cause you to recruit people who are actually good, as I called them in the last video, LOFs leaders of the future, rather than just SPOHs, safe pair of hands, where the person can do the job that they’d been recruited for, but aren’t expected to contribute further.

Your high performance model

So, high-performance modelling is all about identifying high-performance, finding out what makes them high performance in a psychometric and a behavioural sense, and then developing a high-performance model.

So, choosing the exemplars, as I mentioned, excellent leaders in terms of people who achieve excellent results, but exemplify the values and that’s a crucial characteristic.

The things that you might assess in such an exercise, what you’ll want to assess their cognitive ability, how smart they are, you want to assess their personality.

You’ll also want to assess as part of the exercise here, their value set, to understand that they are a values match for the organisation.

And typically what we do is that we ignore any results that you don’t find in 80% or more of the exemplars.

Which is to say if your high performing group is very various in some characteristic, well, you can ignore that characteristic but because it doesn’t seem to matter.

What you’re looking for is where your high performance seem to be very converged in their results.

In other words, a very tight band from a psychometric point of view, or if you’re using the competency interview start part of the process where their answers are very convergent, they tend to say similar things.

And this allows you to build a psych profile which will guide for the recruitment, and the competencies really, it’s an interview process where you ask them about the outcomes that they need to achieve in their job in terms of leadership, the skills that they feel that they’ve acquired, the experience that they’ve acquired, that helps them and the attitudes and values, which they demonstrate in their behaviours each day.

And if you identify all of those characteristics that can build a profile.

So, these are the sorts of questions you might ask, the skills that are necessary for them to achieve the leadership objectives, the experience and knowledge factors, which have helped them, the values and attitudes which have helped them.

And once more, you ignore anything which doesn’t have 80% or at least 70% buy-in from exemplars.

And you use these competencies to drive behavioural interview questions, and they will be used to spot leaders of the future.

Succession planning

Now, as you can understand, these behavioural interview questions are often used before someone’s hired as a recruitment exercise, but they can also be used in a succession planning exercise to undertake a competency analysis with them, to understand how their competency sets relates to the high-performance model and what kinds of coaching guidance and development they may need to help them to move up to this high performance model, to be ready to step up to the leaders of the future.

So, you can imagine you’ve got a psych profile and you’ve got a competency profile, which gives you much greater confidence of somebody who you’re going to promote to make sure that they will be an effective leader.

I don’t know, I mean, it’s the same old question that’s asked many times.

You’ve got this situation where we turn our best technician into our worst leader because the technical skills are very different from the leadership skills and need different preparation.

Building your recruitment kit

So, what we do when we build these things for clients is we create a recruitment kit which has psych profiling and values, assessment, personality, cognitive ability.

Then we create a tailored report.

And this is what one of these tailored reports look like (refer to the video).

And so you can see this diagram here gives a description of what we’re looking for a particular client.

And the green ticks and the red crosses indicate whether the person meets the profile in each of these specific areas, these specific characteristics which have been identified as being typical of high-performing leaders.

Now, you say that this person’s got a big red cross, which suggests that they haven’t met the 70 to 80% cut score that we’ve agreed with the client and so that balance of positives and negatives is not strong enough to get them a big green tick.

Now, you can understand a big green tick or a big red cross makes it easy for a recruiter to understand whether a person is likely to have the characteristics to get them into that select group of being the leaders of the future.

So, it’s a powerful, scientific and simple way of identifying leaders of the future.

So, that’s the concept of high-performance modelling and what we’ll be doing in the next video is to take you through some disability sector profiles.

This data will show you the typical psychological profile of people within the disability sector.

And what you’ll see is that there are some characteristics which are naturally supportive of the idea of people rising to leadership positions within the sector, but there are also some characteristics which are not so.

So, watch the next video to find out.

Ready to create effective future leaders?

Step 5 - Common traits of disability sector employees

Step 3 - How to recruit the leaders of the future

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