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Succession Planning in a Global Business


A successful international hotel business was facing increased comp etition and challenges in recruiting and retaining talented people. Human Qualities consultants worked with them to identify the impact of this on the skills required of their key resource - hotel managers. This indicated the need for a shift away from a nationally-focused, hospitality emphasis, towards a more global, commercial, business-winning mentality.

Our Approach

Human Qualities started working with this organisation more than seven years ago. We first worked with the top team to identify the key competencies that were going to be critical for success in moving the organisation more towards its overall vision.

In order to audit and facilitate the development of these skills a number of different ‘Development Centres’ were designed and implemented, across different levels of management. These continue to be rolled out regularly around the world. Participants take part in simulation based activities that assess their potential to step up to future senior roles, and then receive constructive feedback on their performance. In addition, as part of the event, Human Qualities run a development workshop encouraging participants to plan their own personal development.


The results of the Development Centre are used to assist in international succession planning. In order to maintain a current re source database, and support the ongoing development of managers, "Follow-Up" processes have since been put in place. This enables managers to review their progress in areas identified as requiring development at the initial Development Centre.

As a result, the organisation has an enhanced understanding of the skills of their managers and, as such, is able to identify talent more easily and match individuals to appropriate new roles, on a global basis.

In addition, the impact at an individual level has been to increase self-awareness and thus individuals’ ability to make appropriate career decisions and take personal responsibility for their development.

Furthermore, through reviewing trends in performance at the Development Centres, the business has been able to identify some key training needs required to support managers in leading the organisation towards its goals. Human Qualities has been involved in the design and delivery of two of these programmes – change management and relationship building – throughout Europe.