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Select Strategically-Aligned Leadership Competencies

Increase leadership capabilities by selecting brand-aligned competencies and developing to them.

  • Developing leaders has been the #1 organizational priority for three years running according to our HR Trends and Priority survey.
  • Leadership development has taken top spot because good leaders have a significant impact on agility, employee attraction and retention, organizational alignment, and financial performance. Further, current leadership development efforts are widely seen as ineffective.
  • Establishing formal leadership competencies is the first step in both understanding what your organization needs and closing leadership gaps.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Leadership competencies should be easy to understand, develop, and implement. They should guide all leaders with not only what to do, but also how and why to do it. Many experts agree that the majority of leadership competencies will be roughly the same across industries and organizations.
  • McLean & Company’s seven strategic leadership competencies have been developed from a future-forward perspective aligned with general business deliverables to ensure measurability and accountability for the program and from leaders.
  • Since organizations are unique and differ from each other, we do not advocate a “cookie cutter” approach. Your organizational strategic imperatives will determine which competencies from our framework will best drive and support your future goals.

Impact and Result

  • Competencies lay a foundation for leadership performance expectations-setting, measurement, and development investment.

Select Strategically-Aligned Leadership Competencies Research & Tools

1. Prepare for project launch

Isolate strategic business imperatives and conduct a culture review.

2. Establish leadership competencies

Select and modify leadership competencies to reflect organizational goals and culture.

3. Deploy and integrate leadership competencies

Manage stakeholder expectations and the budget for future phases.

4. Craft competency descriptions

Determine proficiency levels for each competency, by tier.

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Margaret Braun


  • Jeff Appelquist, Founder and President, Blue Knight Leadership
  • Sara Andrews, HR Business Partner, Saffron Building Society
  • Nancy Davis, HR Director, IFDS Group
  • Beth Haley, Consultant, E Haley Inc.
  • Aimee Hansen, Performance Consultant, HR, Blue Cross Learning Institute
  • Kim Kochurka, Director, HR, Blue Cross Learning Institute
  • Jim Kouzes, co-author of The Leadership Challenge, Executive Fellow of Leadership at the Leavey School of Business - Santa Clara University
  • Dave Logan, Co-Founder and Senior Partner of CultureSync, co-author of Tribal Leadership: Leveraging Natural Groups to Build a Thriving Organization
  • Ken Mihelich, Director of Management and Budget, City of Joliet
  • Tracy Patterson, Director, Evaluation Center, Center for Creative Leadership
  • Davida Sharpe, Director, Program and Services Design, Global Product Development, Center for Creative Leadership

Search Code: 75542
Last Revised: July 22, 2014

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