Career Path

How to turn ‘high potentials’ into enterprise leaders

We all know that talent makes or breaks us, but how much time do we devote to talent management? When Andy Newsom, senior vice president and CIO of $6.9 billion global life sciences company CSL Behring, told me he allots at least 15 percent of his time on formal talent management, I asked him to tell me more.

When did you start your talent management program?

I have been with CSL Behring for 33 years. When I became CIO seven years ago, we were a federated IT organization with seven IT teams each reporting to one of seven site general managers. I brought all of those teams together into one enterprise IT organization, which meant we now needed a different kind of talent; we needed people who could lead at the global enterprise level.

I partnered with our HR leaders to develop a disciplined approach to talent management. To start, I decided to dedicate at least 15 percent of my time to talent.

How does your IT leadership team participate?

CSL Behring

Andy Newsom, SVP and CIO of CSL Behring

My leadership teams takes a look at talent on a quarterly basis, at a minimum. We all do quarterly talent reviews where we ask, “Who are our high performers?” These are the people who do a great job every year. We want to know who the high performers are, but we also want to identify the cream of the crop of the high performers: the high potentials. High potentials have the same characteristics as high performers, but they have stronger potential to grow into more senior leadership positions. We identify them and put them on a succession plan.