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CLIENT CASE STUDY


Large European Fashion Company: Developing leadership for ambitious future growth

Unleashing the potential of leaders and developing their skills

Overview

The client is a large European fashion company with over 50,000 employees and more than 200 stores worldwide. While undergoing rapid growth, the company recognized that it faced several significant challenges including an outdated leadership approach, upscaling its operational functions, adopting a different way of leading in which responsibility and accountability are delegated throughout the organization, and establishing a robust framework to assess and develop leadership. Accenture helped it assess its current leadership and develop a new leadership development framework to support both its current and future leaders.

 

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We would not hesitate to recommend Accenture to any organization seeking to carry out a similar intervention–it’s early days yet for us to quantify the full benefit, but we are confident that our investment will have been worthwhile.

Group Director, Business Development and New Markets

Opportunity

While undergoing rapid growth, the company recognized that it faced several significant challenges:

  • A traditional leadership approach had contributed to a culture where people looked upwards for direction rather than using their own initiative.

  • Its rapid growth required upscaling all its operational functions and a different way of leading in which responsibility and accountability are delegated throughout the organization’s leadership hierarchy.

  • An increased need for developing and equipping its next generation of leaders.

  • It wanted to establish a robust framework and process for leadership assessment and development.

Results

The backbone of Accenture’s approach contained four elements:

  • Leadership framework. The creation of a leadership framework and assessment.

  • Assessment and debrief. Assessing and debriefing the company’s top 150 leaders with Accenture-accredited leadership and coaching experts.

  • Three-way conversations. Leaders were asked to develop a Personal Development Plan and review it with their leader/supervisor, and an expert coach.

  • Workshops. Presenting the findings to the board; facilitating a dialogue on the core values and culture required to drive success; supporting the adoption of leadership principles; and inspiring leaders to think strategically, translating the organization’s strategic vision for their own areas in a way that creates meaning for their subordinates.

The company has taken important steps in its leadership development:

  • It has established a strong framework to develop current and future leaders—underscored by a robust framework, tools and leading practices.

  • It has a complete overview of its top 150 leaders’ strengths and developmental areas, and can strategically decide where and how to further invest in its leadership pool.

  • Supervisors have better insight into their subordinates’ allowing them to strategically plan resources and to act as coaches and partners in development.

  • Many leaders showed remarkable progress in maturity, self-awareness and contextual-awareness, as well as performance.

  • Leaders are aware of their role as coaches, and have gained skills to act as such. This allows them to unleash the potential in their people while developing their skills.

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