Vistage Research Center

Get actionable, data-driven insights and expert perspectives from our global community of CEOs and thought leaders. Led by Joe Galvin, Chief Research Officer

Lead by example

As we explored in the first part and second part of this series, the ABLE Framework was created by the National Center for Middle Market (NCMM) to help companies better structure and coordinate their talent planning activities.

As a reminder, the framework has four parts:

Part 1: Align talent strategy with corporate strategy

Part 2: Build the processes you need—but don’t overbuild

Part 3: Lead by example

Part 4: Engage the organization

Now that we’ve explored Align and Build, let’s move on to Lead.


Leadership is critical to effective talent planning. As a CEO, you’ve got to walk the walk and get top management engaged in talent planning activities. Don’t pass this responsibility to human resources or department heads.

Note that many executives in line management don’t feel equipped to deal with HR issues. As CEO, you need to arm your senior leaders with the tools and training they need to be successful. Help them to get to know “high potentials” and other critical talent in your organization—and make sure you know those people, too.

It’s also important to have open and candid conversations with your executive team about talent in the organization (e.g., discuss the pros and cons of various high-potential employees). A few simple tools—like the one for evaluating bench strength in the NCMM/Vistage talent report—can help your team and you in your discussions.

The “lead” checklist

• Walk the walk—ensure that executive and line management actively engage in talent planning and performance reviews (don’t delegate to HR)
• Identify critical individuals and develop succession plans for those individuals
• Identify roles that must be filled by “A” players
• Help senior leaders get to know high-potentials and other critical talent
• Hold people at all levels accountable for performance
• Align incentives and bonuses to strategy
• Support and ensure open, candid discussion in talent review meetings

Next in this series
Engage the organization

Others in this series
Align talent strategy and corporate strategy
Build the processes you need—but don’t overbuild

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Predefined Skins

Primary Color

Background Color

Example Patterns

demo demo demo demo demo demo demo demo demo demo

Privacy Policy Settings

  • Required Cookies
  • Performance Cookies
  • Functional Cookies
  • Advertising Cookies
Required Cookies These cookies are essential in order to enable you to move around the Sites and use its features, such as accessing secure areas of the Sites and using Vistage’s Services. Since these cookies are essential to operate Vistage’s Sites and Services, there is no option to opt out of these cookies.
Performance Cookies These cookies collect information about how visitors our Sites, for instance which pages visitors go to most often. These cookies don’t collect information that identifies a visitor. All information these cookies collect is aggregated and therefore anonymous. If you do not allow these cookies we will not know when you have visited our site, and will not be able to monitor its performance.

Cookies used

Visual Web Optimizer
Functional Cookies These cookies remember information you have entered or choices you make (e.g. as your username, language, or your region), and provide enhanced, more personal features. They may also be used to provide services you have asked for such as watching a video or commenting on a blog. They may be set by us or by third party providers whose services we have added to our pages. If you do not allow these cookies then some or all of these services may not function properly.

Cookies used

Google Analytics
Gravity Forms
Advertising Cookies These cookies are used to make advertising more relevant to you and your interests. The cookies are usually placed by third party advertising networks. They remember the websites you visit and that information is shared with other parties such as advertisers. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.