This idea by McCormick & Co. Inc., in Sparks, Md., is one of the Best HR Ideas for 2012. See the rest of them here.
Drawing on a long history of empowering high-potential talent -- going back to 1932, when founder C.P. McCormick handpicked members of a "junior board of directors" to work on challenging business projects -- McCormick & Co. has rolled out a "global multiple management" program to enhance operations around the world.
Penny Reath, vice president of global talent management at McCormick, says the annual talent-review process was used to select 25 high-potential employees for the program, which was launched in February 2011.
"It really is like an MBA-type program, an education for our employees ... [that] gives them hands-on experience as well as accelerated classroom training," she says, noting that the initiative "is the cornerstone of McCormick's leadership and succession-planning program."
The company created three cross-functional and cross-divisional teams that are given strategic projects to work on, in consultation with business leaders, she says.
"Their recommendations were very powerful and all of their recommendations were implemented," Reath says, adding that strategies pinpointed the best "product areas and product categories" to facilitate global growth and included the creation of corporate business councils to bring executives together to discuss how to grow the business.
Participants are "four times more likely to stay with the business and the engagement scores of those employees are consistently high," Reath says, noting that "we do know there is a relationship between high employee engagement and consistently high financial performance of the business."