Development Centres

Creating a Platform for Accelerated Individual Leadership Development at Senior and High Potential Levels

HFL provides, as part of wider leadership development initiatives or as a stand-alone service, a design and delivery service for Development Centres. Please note that Development Centres are, in essence, exactly the same as Assessment Centres. The only difference is purpose – with ACs the objective might be to assess only, perhaps within a recruitment process, while with DCs, the purpose of the assessment is to provide data which aids development activities.


For an overview of how HFL designs and delivers development and assessment centres please see our page assessment centres.


HFL highly recommends clients invest in development centres for senior executives and high potential talent.


For senior executives: Senior leaders need data driven feedback – as a leader progresses up the hierarchy in an organisation, they get less and less leadership development feedback from those around them; and some of that feedback, from more junior people in 360 surveys etc., they find easy to dismiss. DCs provide senior executives with an objective assessment of where their skills lie in comparison to the standards set by the organisation based on observed leadership behaviour. Most senior leaders who have been through the process tell us it has been the single most valuable piece of feedback they have received for a long time.


High potential talent: HFL recommends stretch DCs for high potential leaders. This enables the organisation (and the participants) to assess how currently ready they are to succeed at a more senior level. These DCs provide a glimpse of what operating out of the corner office looks like for those that aspire to be there, and provides them with direct and useful feedback on where best to expend their development energy. The organisation quickly sees which participants sink and which swims, which relish the challenge of learning and development, and which make excuses and criticise the process, rather than humbly embrace the results. Great leaders are great learners, and a stretch DC for high potential talent is an extremely effective  way in which to judge future capabilities, away from the sponsorship and subjectivity of manager nomination.


HFL has many examples of client interactions at both executive and high potential levels that we would be delighted to share – the outcomes, experiences of participants, and how the entire process is handled diplomatically and effectively, producing insights and development outcomes that would simply not have been achieved without the use of these valuable assessments. Please contact us for a briefing.




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