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Case Study: Leadership Assessment at Robinson Insurance Agency

Todd Robinson, president of Robinson Insurance Agency, couldn’t be happier. The company that Todd’s father, Edger, started thirty years ago is prospering and poised for future growth. Over the past three years, Robinson Insurance has successfully purchased two regional insurance agencies whose owners were ready for retirement. The acquisitions went smoothly, and the firms merged under Todd’s capable leadership. The company now has 13 branch offices, in five different cities, in the greater Portland metropolitan area. The headquarters office—the site of the original Robinson Insurance Agency office—is located in the bustling downtown district in Portland, Oregon.
At 56 years old, Todd Robinson has earned a reputation for being a savvy businessman and a successful entrepreneur. He hopes to acquire at least one other small agency in the next year—a move that will expand the company by two additional branch offices in suburban Portland neighborhoods. However, managing the company is beginning to consume more and more of Todd’s time and energy—time he would like to spend with his family. Todd realizes that he needs to identify potential middle and senior management leaders within the company who can be trained to play a larger role in both day-to-day and strategic decisions.
Todd knows that selecting individuals to fill future leadership positions will be extremely critical to the long-term success of the company. He wants to ensure that the individuals who are identified for growth opportunities have the knowledge, skills and abilities to move into new middle and senior leadership positions as these positions are created. He also wants to ensure that the new leaders will possess and exemplify the “Client First” philosophy that characterizes the company. Frankly, he has concerns that some current managers—especially those from the agencies purchased by Robinson Insurance—may not fully share the company’s values and may only give “lip service” to the company’s customer-oriented values and practices. However, with 13 branch offices, Todd isn’t as familiar with each manger’s potential as he would like to be.
Thus, Todd has retained your services to help plan an assessment-based professional development program. The goal of the program is to identify people within the company who have the potential for greater levels of responsibility and authority, and then to invest in these individuals by providing training and other professional growth opportunities. Todd also wants help creating a succession plan to position the company for long-term success, even after he retires in five to eight years.

sound defense of the feasibility of the plan, to meet the company’s leadership development objectives. In your paper, address the following:

  1. Discuss the key factors for identifying leadership potential.
  2. Identify an assessment-based approach for identifying potential among the managers at Robinson Insurance Agency. Describe how assessment processes and assessment instruments can be used to identify potential leaders and their leadership development needs.
  3. Include in your assessment approach at least three specific assessment instruments to evaluate leadership potential, justifying the use of each assessment instrument for its intended purpose.
  4. Identify the outcomes, data or information produced by each assessment you propose in your plan and review the considerations for facilitating feedback from each type of assessment.
  5. Provide details of practical considerations of your plan, such as who will implement which parts of the assessment plan (an insider, an outsider, or a combination of both), what type of certification may be necessary to administer each assessment, and how the managers within Robinson Insurance will be consulted and involved in the assessment process.
  6. Identify the potential legal ramifications that may arise if Robinson Insurance Agency implements an assessment-based approach to identifying potential. Discuss ways of ensuring that the approach you recommend for the company is legal and justifiable

Sample Solution

h it had attracted advocates for a long time, now came into full vogue and continued to dominate economic thinking. Discovery introduced Europe to new foods and beverages. Coffee, from Ethiopia, had been consumed in Arabia and Egypt before its wide European use began in the 17th century. Tobacco, an American plant smoked by Indians, won an Old World market despite many individual objectors; the same proved true of chocolate from Mexico and tea from Asia. The South American potato became a staple food in such places as Ireland and central Europe. Cotton, from the Old World, took firm root in the New, from which Europe received an enormously increased supply. Sugar, introduced to the American tropics, along with its molasses and rum derivatives, in time became the principal exports of those regions. Spice was certainly more plentiful than before the discoveries, though the Dutch, when they controlled the East Indies, were able to limit production and thus to keep the price of cloves and nutmegs high. The influence of the discoveries permeated literature. Sir Thomas More’s Utopia, printed in 1516 and dealing with an imaginary island, was suggested by South America. The Portuguese poet Luís de Camões recounted the voyage of Vasco da Gama, though fancifully, in epic verse. Michel de Montaigne discoursed upon American savages, some of whom he had seen in France. Christopher Marlowe’s drama Tamburlaine (1587), though based on the life of the Asiatic conqueror, was an exhortation to his fellow Englishmen to penetrate the New World. Historiography acquired a broader base by taking the newly discovered lands into account. Astronomy was revolutionized by European penetration of the Southern Hemisphere and discovery of constellations unknown before. Map makers, typified by the Fleming Gerardus Mercator and the Dutchman Abraham Ortelius, portrayed the world in terms that are still recognizable. Colonies from northern Europe and mercantilism (17th century) The northern Atlantic powers, for understandable reasons, acquired no permanent overseas possessions before 1600. The United Provinces of the Netherlands spent the final decades of the 16th century winning independence from Spain; France had constant European involvements and wars of religion; England, matrimonially allied wit
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