Miguel was on the fast-track, or so he thought. As a manager in a rapidly growing multi-national bank, had always enjoyed a reputation as a “high potential,” and had been promoted quickly because of his strong technical competence. That’s why he was surprised to learn he’d been passed up for his next promotion to Director. His aloof, tough style that discounted the need to connect at an interpersonal level had previously been overlooked by his managers. Until this “derailment moment,” he had not seen the need to shift towards more managerial and strategic competencies, assuming his technical expertise would keep paying off. Miguel, like many managers with a lot of early promise, had failed to reach his full potential as a leader in his company.
To develop leaders in Latin America, we must draw on the knowledge and best practices of the field, while asking new questions and adapting our approach to the specific cultural, economic, political and social contexts in which leadership is needed. One such question is why some managers, like Miguel, “derail,” and how these factors differ (or remain the same) in Latin America compared to other regions of the world. Managerial derailment is a term describing managers who were prematurely fired, demoted, or stopped advancing below their expected levels of achievement (i.e., reached career plateaus). To help our clients and colleagues target and tailor developmental opportunities, a team of researchers at the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) conducted a study of managerial derailment in Latin America. In this white paper, we share our findings, consider cultural factors that may underlie the data, and offer suggestions for keeping Latin American managers on the track of career success.Download Article