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Balfour Beatty: Identifying High Potential Leaders

balfour beatty identifying high potential leaders with kiddy and partners

    Balfour Beatty, the international infrastructure services business, wanted to introduce a more objective method of identifying high potential leaders for succession to senior positions.

    Kiddy provided a solution using its model of high potential and simulation-based assessment methodology.

  • Client Needs

    Balfour Beatty had become more integrated, moving from over 30 independent operating companies, to becoming a more integrated business organised by geography and having a greater focus on end user markets.

    This required a greater visibility of their talent. Although the annual talent review provided some visibility, the Group HRD and Head of Learning & Development wanted to put in place a more objective process for identifying high potential talent.

    Kiddy were asked to help develop clear criteria for identifying high potentials and provide a means of assessment in which their senior leaders could play a key role.

  • Our Approach

    Kiddy interviewed Balfour Beatty’s Divisional MDs and HR Directors as well as a cross section of high potentials.

    We used this data to tailor the Kiddy model of potential, translating our generic indicators into relevant factors and expressing them in language that resonated with those in the business.

    We then used our benchmarked simulation to provide the basis for a two-day Development Centre, in which Kiddy observers partnered with senior Balfour Beatty line and HR managers to assess high potentials nominated by the Divisions.

    The simulation provided individuals with the challenges and level of complexity typically associated with jobs at Divisional MD level.


The assessments provided an good understanding into the relative potential of those nominated, as well as providing a benchmarked view, in terms of how they performed relative to Kiddy’s external benchmarks.

Each participant gained insight, both through their performance in the various tasks and the feedback received following the Development Centre.

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