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Leadership Development

IBM has a long history of developing its leadership to inspire both IBMers and our clients to make the world work better. IBM believes that developing strong leaders is good for employees, IBM and the world.

At IBM, we continue to invest in a wide variety of innovative leadership programs and experiences, providing IBMers with experiences and opportunities that will serve them at IBM or wherever their careers take them. Below are just a few of the leadership development opportunities we made available during the course of 2011.

THINK Forum, Leadership Development Day

In September, 2011, IBM hosted THINK: Forum on the Future of Leadership at Lincoln Center in New York. The Forum on the Future of Leadership event brought together leaders from government, business, academia and science, along with an audience of up-and-coming leaders from across the globe, to deepen their collective understanding of the keys to success on a smarter planet.

As part of the leadership experience, IBM identified 250 of its own promising leaders to participate in the event. As a prelude to meeting with other world leaders in New York, this team of IBMers gathered to reflect on taking their own leadership to the next level. Through a series of presentations and individual and group exercises, the group reflected on personal leadership approaches, articulated a leadership commitment and identified the action steps they will take to become stronger leaders. Participation in this event helped the members understand how to lead in both familiar and unknown situations and challenges. And it gave them the opportunity to think broadly about IBM’s 100-year history, the impact the company has had on the world and the possibilities for the next 100 years.

The prelude event also gave IBM’s leaders the opportunity to collaborate with colleagues and peers across the global breadth of the organization. They then joined world leaders in New York to share their insights and engage in cross-disciplinary discussions on making the world work better together.

THINK: Forum on the Future of Leadership250 of IBM’s promising leaders participated in the THINK: Forum on the Future of Leadership event in New York in 2011.

I&VT 8: Success in Africa

The Integration and Values Team (I&VT) has played an integral role in the advancement of IBM’s most promising leaders for the last six years. I&VT members are appointed with the expectation that they will work to integrate and transform IBM, lead by values and develop other IBM leaders.

Since 2006, there have been eight successful I&VT initiatives that helped to educate these leaders in important areas of focus for the company. The topics have included client value, enabling the globally integrated enterprise, the global IBMer, cloud computing, business analytics and most recently, success in Africa. Each of these initiatives has transformed the way IBM does business, added value to our clients and helped in the development of our senior executives.

The most recent initiative, I&VT 8, focused on Africa and was pivotal in enabling the success of enterprise-wide initiatives for growth in the region. Members of this team had the opportunity to learn about Africa through first-hand experience with the people and businesses throughout the continent. The team met with clients, government officials, NGOs and business partners in Morocco, Ghana, Angola, Kenya, Tanzania and Nigeria. They worked closely with the country teams to understand the national agendas, local issues, business opportunities and most importantly, establish long lasting relationships with locals.

Members of the team also had the opportunity to participate in councils such as Destination Africa, a global recruiting program designed to inspire IBMers to fill critical roles in fast-growing markets in Africa, while providing them the opportunity to grow their careers and capabilities. I&VT 8 team members have also participated in diversity councils, allowing them to transfer knowledge and skills around their experiences in Africa to the greater IBM community.