Case study

Development & Sponsorship Program For High-Po Black & Latinx Leaders With Fortune 500 Company


Our client, a Fortune 500 global technology-based transportation and services business, sought to design, implement, and execute a development and sponsorship program for high-potential Black and Latinx talent at the VP level in their engineering function.

Advances in technology, an explicit commitment to inclusive leadership and diversity, and a complex and rapidly evolving competitor landscape created the impetus for our client to redefine their approach to their talent pipeline, interactions, succession planning, and total organizational culture.

Alongside formal sponsorship by assigned senior executives, the organization hoped to incorporate cohort-based leadership development sessions, leadership profiling to support individual understanding of individuals styles and the Sponsor/Sponsee partnership, and rigorous measurement of participant experience and impact.


We designed a full-year program that integrated individual learning and development; intensive, cohort-based learning sessions; support for Sponsor / Sponsee partnerships; and impact measurement.  Cohort-based learning sessions integrated enhancement of critical leadership skills, fostering a social-professional-support network to enhance cross-team collaboration, and targeted development of multi-directional influencing styles.

Program components included:

  • Co-created design, tailored to the client’s organizational culture
  • Light-touch, 1:1 assessment, including analysis of psychometric data and Individual identification of development goals
  • Five full-day intensive learning sessions based on the YSC Model of Leadership Potential, with topics including meaning and purpose; interpersonal and organizational influencing; inclusive leadership; judgment and decision-making; and resilience
  • Each session was accompanied by materials in bespoke guidebooks, designed to offer external resources and to support participants in tracking between-session development
  • 360-degree feedback and PULSE surveys of participant progress against goals
  • Joint Sponsor/Sponsee summits to strengthen partnerships and improve Sponsor impact
  • Measurement design and program evaluation​

Via responses from external stakeholders to 360-degree feedback measures executed before, during, and after the program, 81% of participants demonstrated significant growth and progress on achievement of their leadership development goals.

Post-program, 62.5% of participants earned expanded roles and/or scope of responsibilities as a result, in part, of their successful participation in the program.

100% of participants reported that the program had helped them to develop their leadership successfully, and 100% of participants reported that the program was “moderately valuable” or “extremely valuable.” Program participants reported increased confidence in their leadership skill, and further noted that the cohort-based network development was a particularly powerful component of the learning experience.

Following the success of the first cohort, our client requested design of a module that could be replicated globally with facilitation by local YSC consultants alongside local sponsors and participants.

“The most valuable part [of the intervention] has been the network we have built through this program. The fact that we share all of our assessments and our personal experiences in such depth has created an amazing bond within this group.”