Study Finds 10 Key Competencies for High Performers

Study Finds 10 Key Competencies for High Performers

The Corporate Executive Board Company (CEB) analyzed performance based on information from more than 20,000 managers and their employees (40 organizations across the globe).

They found 10 competencies differentiated and identified “high performers” able to succeed in our volatile, changing “new work environment.”

These competencies can be categorized into three key areas – adapting to change, working collaboratively, and applying judgment:

Adapt to Change
• Organizational awareness
•Learning agility

Work Collaboratively
•Technical expertise

Apply Judgment
• Prioritization
•Problem solving
•Decision making

According to their research, these competencies are found in about 5% of the working population. They also suggest that “The competencies essential to strong performance in the new work environment are best developed through on-the-job experience with a single company over time.”

What can your small or mid-sized organization due to develop at least part of your staff into high performers by focusing on these skill sets?

Read the full report at:

Identifying and Enabling the New High Performer

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Does your manager have the competencies to be one?

Does your manager have the competencies to be one?

You have rewarded your best supervisor with a promotion to manager.

She is the one person you could rely on to put out the fire, lead the charge on an install, and to get stuff done. Now you granted her the authority to lead the team and changed her role so now she has the time to “be a manager.”

But for some reason, she is not transforming the department as you expected.

You ask yourself, why does she:

  • Continue to react to problems instead of implementing process improvement
  • Work at the level of tactics and today’s work instead of thinking more strategically
  • Struggle with holding team members accountable
  • Spend more time than you expect in the field/ warehouse/  or “wandering around”
  • Fail to implement those projects that have been on your wish list for months or years

Your star supervisor may have the competencies to be a manager, or may need business systems and coaching to develop these skill sets.

Here is a short list of common competencies that both supervisors and managers should have:

  • Decisive Judgment
  • Planning and Organizing
  • Driving for Results
  • Managing Others
  • Coaching and Developing Others

Supervisors and managers also approach their work at different levels knowledge, methods, time horizon and involvement with process:





Adapting to Change

Championing Change


Motivating Others

Relationship Management


Functional or Technical Acumen

Business Acumen

 Time Frame

3-12 months

1-2 years (general managers 2-5 years)

 Systems/ process

Follow and support systems

Create, monitor, improve systems

If this situation sounds familiar, take a moment and rate your manager on the level of competence for each of these skills to answer the question “is she a supervisor or a manager?” Her development plan would then be designed to improve in these key areas.

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