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Case Study

Our Client Said...

“TalentSmart opened our eyes to powerful and sustainable methods for assessing and understanding our leaders' capabilities, developing and accelerating the capacities of our leadership, and helping each team to understand one another better. All in all, this was critically important transformational work for us.”

Carl Hedlund, CEO

ThermaTru Doors

Emotional intelligence prepares leaders to take accountability for change.

Fortune Brands

About Our Client

Fortune Brands is a $7 billion company that owns key brands, such as Master Lock, Moen faucets, Titleist, Cobra Golf, and Jim Beam. Behind the brands and successful strategy are 32,000 people with a passion to win.

Their Challenge

In 2003, Fortune kicked off a strategic initiative to double the size of a $400 million division, Therma Tru Doors. They knew this change would require a well-defined leadership development strategy to take their current talent to the next level. Emotional intelligence skills were exactly what their leaders needed to succeed in running a division twice its current size. Developing leaders' emotional intelligence skills would have an added benefit in helping them navigate the inevitable uncertainty and change during the tumultuous five years ahead. Fortune asked TalentSmart to create a leadership development process to achieve the following:

  1. Accurate measurement and skill building in the organization's 11 key competencies.
  2. A strong focus on goal setting and personal accountability for change.
  3. Metrics to measure the program's value.

Our Solution

TalentSmart worked closely with Fortune's Human Resources and Organization Development leaders to develop a custom assessment, leadership development program, and follow-on support.

Customized 360° Assessment
Our design team turned the behavior statements from their competency model into sound assessment questions. A customized 360° survey was automated via our proprietary online platform, and customized e-learning activities were created and incorporated into the assessment.

Leadership Program, E-learning, and Coaching
An intensive, multi-day leadership development program was created to focus on building self-awareness and increasing each attendee's emotional intelligence skills. The leadership development program began with the senior leadership team and migrated down the organization to all levels of management. Participants received their 360° feedback and created action plans based on their biggest skill gaps. Optional follow-on support included TalentSmart's Goal-Tracking System, e-learning, and face-to-face executive coaching.

Outcome Measures
ROI measurements were gathered to see if leaders who went through the program were "impacted." If a leader was impacted, he or she made gains in performance (as measured by metrics of key business indicators) that were significant enough to warrant a promotion.

  • 73% of leaders who attended the program and worked with an executive coach after the program were impacted.
  • 81% of leaders who attended the program, completed the e-learning, and used the Goal-Tracking were impacted.
  • 100% of leaders who attended the program and used all available development methods (an executive coach, the e-learning, and the Goal-Tracking System) were impacted.
  • 28% of leaders who attended the program but declined to participate in the e-learning, Goal-Tracking System, and executive coaching were impacted.

The results of this initiative highlight the fundamental importance of emotional intelligence for companies maneuvering through periods of rapid upheaval and change. In addition to the obvious performance improvements, the company realized attrition-related improvements for leadership positions. Specifically, Therma Tru saw a decrease in undesirable attrition. In the case of desirable attrition, the company realized something simple and profound. The process of taking leaders through the Leader of the Future program provided each leader with something that's rare in the workplace today—the opportunity to compare individual career goals against the direction of the larger organization. A small minority of leaders were clearly not ready for these changes and did not want to be a part of the new Therma Tru. Rather than waiting months, or even years, to discover important players were lagging and unhappy, the program fostered open communication that led these individuals to plan their exits proactively.

Products and Services Delivered

Assessment Services

Host your next custom 360° assessment with the TalentSmart online learning platform.

On-site Training

TalentSmart provides on-site emotional intelligence programs.


One-on-one coaching provides direction, focus, and development.