Leadership Development as a Competitive Advantage

A.G. Lafley, CEO of Proctor and Gamble, believes that developing leaders is a source of competitive advantage for P&G.

Somewhere out in the global sprawl of 160 countries where Procter & Gamble sells its products is a 35-year-old manager who, one day, will be CEO. And the company's current chief executive, A.G. Lafley, sitting at headquarters back in Cincinnati, is watching, focusing his attention far and wide on those bright upstarts.

Lafley takes succession management and leadership development seriously. He and his senior vice president for human relations, Dick Antoine, regularly look through four "bands," or layers, of managers to identify future CEOs. Members of the board of directors get the same names and are encouraged to go out into the field to meet the possible CEOs-in-waiting. "The further out you look, the more speculative it is," says Lafley, who is 58. "When I'm guessing on a 35-year-old, I really am guessing."

Overall, Lafley says he spends a third to half his time on leadership development. The company says it cannot calculate precisely how much money it spends on leadership development, but it is obviously huge. All employees are subject to 360-degree reviews beginning within a year after they start, and there are a raft of leadership development programs that span an entire career. Line managers are evaluated-and compensated-not just on their business results but also on the basis of how well they develop their organizations. The company also has a computerized Talent Development System containing names of 3,000 top executives and details of their backgrounds in order to help in identifying the right person for the right job.

P&G says it believes it would take competitors considerable time and money to fully replicate its leadership development system. "The people we hire, and the focus we put on their development as leaders, are critical to P&G's ability to innovate and compete," says Lafley, who says he is constantly looking for "teachable moments" to improve the skills of his management team. "Nothing I do will have a more enduring impact on P&G's long-term success than helping to develop other leaders."

The article goes on to discuss the best companies for leaders. You have to be careful when discussing leadership, because it has a cult-like status in the world of business. But one thing is for sure, developing your people – on any level – is good for the bottom line.

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  • Those 360 degree reviews are magical (I’ve been hearing in my research). They work wonders for both the reviewer and the reviewee.

    One manager sent me the training syllabus she uses to make sure that everyone at every level gives feedback that is timely, relevant, and helpful.

    In her experience training everyone to give great feedback makes the 360 degree reviews better than standard performance reviews.

  • Brenda Kidd

    Procter and Gamble and Brenda Kidd:
    Unlike Pampers, why can’t Procter & Gamble just sit down with Brenda Kidd and talk about her Actonel adverse side effect injuries? This has been going on way to long.

  • Procter & Gamble and Brenda Kidd:
    Unlike Pampers, why can’t Procter & Gamble just sit down with Brenda Kidd and talk about her Actonel adverse side effects, injuries that occurred, before Procter and Gamble sold Actonel, which is a drug for osteoporosis to another company? This has been going on way to long. I will never buy Procter and Gamble cruisers Dry Max Pampers again, for anyone in my family and also for any babie’s showers. My grandchild has had serious rashes from those pampers.

  • Brenda Kidd

    Procter and Gamble 1,4-Dioxane Cancer Causing Chemical And Brenda Kidd

    1,4-dioxane is known to the state of California to cause cancer.
    It is also on California’s Proposition 65 list of chemicals known to cause cancer.
    According to the California EPA, 1,4-dioxane is suspected as a kidney toxicant, neurotoxicant and respiratory toxicant.

    Many companies use ethoxylation because it is a cheap shortcut process to provide mildness to harsh cleaning ingredients. The process requires the use of the cancer causing Petrochemical ethylene oxide, which generates 1,4-dioxane as a byproduct of ethoxylation.

    According to the Environmental Working Group, 1,4-dioxane is also a groundwater contaminant.

    Procter and Gamble Tide, Ivory Snow Gentle, Tide Free, Gain 2X Ultra, Cheer Bright Clean Detergent and Era 2X Ultra Conventional Brands had significantly higher levels of contaminant, which is 1,4-dioxane a known cancer causing chemical.

    Below are some of Procter & Gamble Products that contains 1,4-dioxane during a product conducted test.

    Tide had 55 parts per million of 1,4-dioxane in it.
    Ivory Snow Gentle had 31 parts per million of 1,4-dioxane in it.
    Tide Free had 29 parts per million of 1,4-dioxane in it.
    Gain 2X Ultra had 21 part per million of 1,4-dioxane in it.
    Cheer Bright Clean Detergent had 20 parts per million of 1,4-dioxane in it.
    Era 2X Ultra had 14 parts per million of 1,4-dioxane in it.

    However, 1,4-dioxane is not included on Procter and Gamble products ingredient labels, but it is a cancer causing chemical.

    1,4-dioxane is not only in Procter and Gamble Conventional Brands of detergents, 1,4-dioxane is also in 18 of Procter and Gamble Herbal Essences shampoo products too.

    A product test conducted revealed that an Herbal Essences shampoo of Procter and Gamble, contained 1,4-dioxane levels of 24 parts per million. That is 14 parts per million, over the limit, which is 10 parts per million.

    The cancer causing chemical 1,4-dioxane is considered contaminant and is not included on the products ingredient labels.
    The Food and Drug Administration does not require 1,4-dioxane to be listed on labels of personal care products, defining it as a contaminant rather than an ingredient because it is produced during manufacturing.

    Procter and Gamble agreed to reformulate after an Environmental health consumer advocate filed a notice of intent to sue in California, under Proposition 65, the state’s landmark toxics law. Procter and Gamble agreed to reformulate 18 of their Herbal Essences products to reduce levels of 1,4-dioxane to 10 parts per million or below.
    1,4-dioxane is found in personal care products (shampoos, Cosmetics, deodorants, toothpastes and mouthwashes) and household cleaning products.

    If you digested or swallowed toothpaste and mouthwash, can 1,4-dioxane get in your system and cause severe Lung, Esophagus and Stomach Cancer?
    If you cut yourself, while you are shaving on any part of your body, (under the arm) can 1,4-dioxane get into your system and cause Breast Cancer/Cancer?

    1,4-dioxane is known to cause cancer and is considered contaminant and Procter and Gamble knows this, however, (through the years, over the limit amounts of) 1,4-dioxane had been in their products.

    Breast Cancer is breast cancer.
    Lung Cancer is lung cancer.
    Esophagus Cancer is esophagus cancer.
    Stomach Cancer is stomach cancer.

    Cancer is Cancer, why would any group of people, knowing that 1,4-dioxane causes cancer put 1,4-dioxane in their products?
    Cancer is devastating. It can be prolonged or it can be a rapid form of death.

    Procter and Gamble Products that contains 1,4-dioxane are still on the market.

    Procter and Gamble have failed to warn consumers about their personal care and household cleaning products, which contains 1,4-dioxane.
    Procter and Gamble have failed to provide the consumers with warnings about the danger of 1,4-dioxane to one’s health.
    Proctor and Gamble have failed to give instructions to the public on how to prevent deviation from accepted use of their products that contain 1,4-dioxane.

    Is Cancer man made?

    Do Procter and Gamble care about the Consumers?

    Products can be made without 1,4-dioxane.