A growing specialty pharmaceutical business unit recognized the need to define its leadership competencies and put in place an overall strategy for developing emerging leaders, first line leaders, and leaders of leaders. The organization knew that a commitment and investment in leadership was needed to obtain the advantage in an increasingly competitive and complex oncology marketplace.

Approach and Deliverables

WLH undertook a comprehensive diagnostic to gain input on the leadership vision and priorities.  The diagnostic and a review of their current approach led to a series of recommendations:

  • Define leadership behaviors by levels
  • Ensure a newly created Emerging Leadership Program would generate future leaders
  • Outline a development plan for all to engage employees and reduce retention risks
  • Focus on enhancing coaching skills
  • Move beyond basic leadership offerings to include specific business acumen and strategic thinking capabilities development


The organization leveraged the leadership development initiative as an overall change and culture transformation opportunity.  The focus on aligning leadership behaviors created consistency, clarity of expectations, and engagement at all levels.  And equally important, senior executives maintained a commitment to leadership development in the face of multiple launches and pressing business challenges.

Wendy L. Heckelman, Ph.D.

Dr. Wendy Heckelman, president and founder of WLH Consulting, Inc. has over 30 years of experience working with Fortune 100 industry clients. These include pharmaceutical, biotech, health care, animal health medicines, and consumer products, as well as international non-profit organizations and growing entrepreneurial companies.

Case StudiesWLH Learning SolutionsCompetency ModelsLeadership StrategySpecialty Pharma