do you have "leaders with potential!" type programmes at your work?

I cannot stand them they are so idiotic and exclusionary. Why would you have leaders without potential? What is the point of these things?

NB I am aware that some law firms do them in a sensible way as part of an actual partnership promotion track but that is not what I am talking about I am talking about something that is totally unconnected to actual career progression and just eems like a silly secret club.

Yes. It's some sort of academy that nobody talks about.

exactly this sort of thing!

the first rule of nerd academy etc

and some people seem to finish and then remain in the same job for years and years and what was the point you could have spent that time in the pub

Yeah but tbf it's on its way out as we're gonna stop creating these hi-po monsters because their self-entitled manipulative toy-throwing when the pram slows down even the teeniest bit is getting on our tits.

hahaha I am pleased this is a thing that has been noticed by someone at least because come the hell on

ofc if it is on the out in your industry we will get rid of it in mine circa 2120

We have a leadership development programme open to all leaders and then also a talent fast track development programme for people who are identified as potential future senior leadership

Well, it's been replaced by training for all leaders so I'm a bit miffed about that.

I think they should do more of this sort of thing. I’ve found my own one and have got the company to pay for it - comment from my then overseer being an incredulous “we’ve got a budget for executive coaching?”

Sounds a bit shit if there is one but it’s a secret though. 

just this sentence fills me with panic

"a talent fast track development programme for people who are identified as potential future senior leadership"

it's such a crock


We have one called the management development forum and at the end of the 6 month course you get a level 5 certificate from the institute of leadership and management.

At this point so many people have done it that it's basically pointless.

My st8 comp had a "potentials" program for those of us who could breathe and see at the same time without fainting.  The only things I remember about it are learning some latin and going to see Return to tue Forbidden Planet.  At the latter I sat next to fit Holly and snogged her whilst the shakespeare was being butchered musically.

"Lean in" and suckle from the company teat. What could go wrong? I suppose your husband could have a heart attack on a treadmill and you miss your kids growing up... but apart from that

Hotnot YRUSAP?*


*registered tm of wangco holdings

I thought all firms had a couple of trainees who became known as 'articled partners'.

I believe the modern iteration is “equity trainee”, and that’s not what this thread is about, but otherwise great stuff. 

Dibs on 'articled partner'.

"Hi, I'm an articled partner there. How can I help."

We had a leadership programme. Anyone could go on it which devalued it imo. Mainly because half the people who went on it because they could didn't bother with most of the small group sessions which made them entirely pointless.

I still have to write two essays to get my ILM certificate...

Yeah I'm still going to do ours but only to be able to fit in when people whinge about it

No, it's not 'only for women'. Stop stirring.  Maybe you have additional training for women but not leadership development exclusively for women as that would be hugely discriminatory.

We have a talent identification programme where we divided people into groups

rocks - people who have reached their potential, are good at their job and happy where they are.

stars - people who should be developed for the future

pebbles - people who are replaceable in their role and not worth considering until they apply for a better role and prove themselves to be one of the other groups

and biscuits - people who are ambitious but not talented enough to be promoted to another role but good where they are.

What is good about this is that...


1. HR communicated the instructions wrong and TOLD THE MANAGERS TO TELL EVERYONE WHAT THEY THOUGHT THEY WERE

2. Its decided entirely on prejudice and your managers perception

3. Once decided it's never changed

4. no one takes responsibility for the ridiculous names

5. It was littered with indirect discrimination, so on the first cut you couldn't be a star if you weren't geographically mobile and capable of overtime..

They are rethinking this now... but it is really how they think no matter how they rebrand it..



Tricky, at my place we have a women in leadership scheme


Loads of our staff do the Level 3 ILM that is has no value as if you stay here long enough you just get shoved on it so you have something to say in next years appraisal with not intention of ever promoting you or giving you more responsibility

Doggers wtf at all that?!?

also wtf @ “biscuits”?

I know!... those are the titles we used... who the fvck would ever want to be a rock, a pebble or a biscuit!

It caused mayhem and bad feeling and a lot of people moved roles internally or are doing so.

We have a whole appraisal system with a 5 year plan for individuals based around development... and they you tell 90% of the staff they are stuck where they are or replaceable (only 10% can be in the stars category...)


I think the biscuits one was they would crumble in another role but if you don't move them they are fine.

back in a previous life I was a sub-contractor for part of the Exxon group and was 'managed' by someone who had been identified as a potential European VP material and hence on an accelerated path to the stars.  He was subsequently downgraded and ended up (understandably) bitter and twisted about the whole thing.

I have come across one:

The 'High Potential' commercial manager was useless, mainly because he was completely disconnected from the team he was supposed to be working with.  An embarassing re-negotiation had to be forced and had.

One lawyer (quite junior, I think) had been identified as having High Potential.  Good for him (really).  I was told this in semi-hushed terms of great import by my manager (who was/is a dangerous narcissit).

However, if it gets access to some decent management training and coaching, then any lawyer with the chance should get on such a programme.  Managment is a particular issue in law...