The executives at the global consulting firm had achieved something big: after much work, they’d developed their new “Leadership DNA,” a leadership model that would help executives lead through a time of significant disruption. But now they faced a new task — that of spreading the word. They needed to educate senior leaders on the new leadership model, to inspire them to reflect on their own strengths and potential growth areas. And because the firm operates at such a large scale, with thousands of leaders worldwide spread across more than 100 countries, that task was a big one. How could they spread the word and begin the conversation across so vast a landscape, without spending a prohibitive amount of time, money, or other resources?
The issue was a pressing one. As an industry leader and part of the vanguard of innovation, the firm’s executives knew they needed to put in the effort to prepare the next generation of leaders and give employees at the executive level ownership of their journey. Ultimately, they realized that the best way to do this was by sparking self-reflection: rather than giving a presentation or training course, they could create a much more powerful and inspiring result by encouraging people to evaluate their own behaviors and consider them up against the firm’s clearly defined ideals and goals.
To do this, they developed a self-assessment that educated people on the firm’s core values, and got them thinking about whether their own behaviors were aligned. The assessment put forth how they wanted their leaders to act, and pushed each employee to think critically about where they excelled and where they could improve. To score the assessments, they came up with a reliable scale that allowed them to establish good data. They trialed it with small groups of 15 or 30, and initial results were promising: the assessment was inspiring the conversation they wanted, and delivering the data they needed. But the question remained of how to roll out this assessment to their huge number of leaders around the world.
They needed to find a platform that fit their specific needs:
Finding a platform that met one or two of these requirements wasn’t difficult, but finding one that fit every one of their needs — especially that of immediate, electronically-delivered reporting — proved more difficult. So when they came across Brilliant Assessments, an assessment-building tool that highlights its sophisticated feedback-report-building capability, they knew this was a path to pursue. Unlike other assessment-building software, Brilliant Assessments had the capability to instantly give employees in-depth feedback based on their responses, while also sending them a PDF version of their feedback for future use. This was key for their goals.
Once they began working with Brilliant Assessments in early 2018, it became clear that there was another feature they hadn’t considered but that was as important, if not more, than the instantaneous feedback reports: the ability to collaborate with Brilliant Assessments to continue to improve their innovative assessment approach. Because the Brilliant Assessment team offers not only fully configurable features, but also a development team that’s always at the ready to solve problems and think big, the firm could partner with them to find new and novel ways to best leverage the platform.
Brilliant Assessments, unlike a lot of cookie-cutter assessment-building tools, looked at these requests as exciting problems to solve, and worked closely with the firm’s executive team to find an answer. “This can be done” was always the answer: there was always a way.
With the ability to fully customize their assessment and the tool where required, the consulting firm was able to implement their leadership development program exactly as they’d envisioned it — and are already seeing results and taking steps to continue to improve. Through the platform, they’ve been able to reach out to executive-level employees across different geographies through a no-touch, completely automated process. And because the results are totally anonymous, the assessment non-compulsory, and the feedback report generated automatically and delivered privately, the responses are far more honest and enlightening than other self-assessments.
What’s more, the ability to anonymize and aggregate these honest, revealing responses has allowed executives to identify trends and take steps accordingly. They can understand the current status of leadership behavior worldwide, and see which geographies or career levels require which resources. If a certain group or location is adopting the leadership model more quickly or more slowly, they can reach out to them with appropriate training and assistance. In short, they’re beginning to realize their goal of empowering everyone, everywhere, with the resources they need to thrive as a leader.
Once the leadership self-assessment was up and running, the firm explored other ways that they can use the platform to improve. Within the Brilliant Assessments platform, they’ve been able to develop multiple versions of their initial assessment, which allows them to leverage it for other projects and goals with minimal effort. They’ve also worked with the Brilliant Assessments team to leverage a more complex 360 style assessment that incorporates the feedback of multiple raters and generates qualitative, anonymous feedback automatically. Meanwhile, another department has created an assessment that uses sophisticated decision-tree logic to help further one of the firm’s well-being initiatives.
And, of course, the collaborative nature of Brilliant Assessments means that, as the original leadership assessment continues to circulate, they can take the feedback they receive and use it to iterate on the platform. In this way, the assessments themselves continue to grow and improve, in an entirely democratized and organic way, just as it helps the leaders of the next generation to do the same.