Association of Talent Development - Greater Cincinnati Chapter

Geri Morgan | Director, HR, SentriLock
Justin Clark | L & D Manager, SentriLock

Leadership Academy: Growing Your Leadership Talent Pipeline
1:30 - 2:30p (Georgian II)

We are looking to share a success story from a GCATD Fall Conference a few years ago! After attending an amazing session which spent some time on creating a emerging leaders development program for HiPo and HiPer employees, we set out to implement our own. We have been faced with some pretty incredible growth over the years, and when possible we aim to fill opportunities internally! To help prepare for future growth, we wanted to give our employees the leadership skills today to begin implementing and practicing in their current roles. The goal of the program is to imbue our HiPo and HiPer employees with the leadership skills we look for at SentriLock: Relationship Management, Thought Leadership, Leadership and Navigation, Ethical Practice, Business Acumen, and Communication.

After researching a few emerging leader programs, SentriLock founded our internal 'Leadership Academy.' This six month program features an application process where we work with managers and a rubric to determine who would be a good fit for the academy. We consider a number of factors such as informal leadership, involvement in committees, and job performance. Once we have identified our class of 7-12, we jump into the six month series featuring three parts: monthly mentoring with a leadership team mentor, monthly one-day workshops targeted at each leadership competency, and one business challenge project where our participants team up to diagnose, solve, and present a solution to a business challenge.

Our inaugural class rated the series as a 4.70 out of 5.00 on providing skills they can implement in their current role as well as preparing them for future opportunities. The first year of the program has also seen nearly 40% of participants find career growth. On the intangible side, we helped build lasting mentor relationships that are continuing to this day.

In this session, we hope to give participants some practical tools to launch and lead an annual emerging leader development program which can lead to individual career growth, increased engagement/job satisfaction, and retaining top talent. We will outline the academy from creating the business case for exec buy-in, navigating the selection process, program design, and, of course, celebrating success. 

      About Geri Morgan 

      Geri MorganGeri started her HR career with the Kroger Company working as a HR Coordinator supporting the Cincinnati Kroger stores focused on improving the selection and onboarding process, employee and labor relations, and championing the Kroger customer first culture. Geri then joined Triplefin and established HR policies, process and influence in this fast-growing pharmaceutical support service provider. Geri and the Triplefin leadership team were able to double in company size and profitability over 6 years and pivoted industries from distribution fulfillment to patient centric pharmaceutical support solutions. Triplefin was a best place to work in 2012 and 2013. Triplefin was recognized by Inc magazine as one of the fastest growing companies in the US and remained in the national top 500 list for 4 of the 6 years she was there. Geri then joined another fast-growing organization, SentriLock. SentriLock is a technology company providing an access management solution to industries like Real Estate, Property Management and Healthcare. At SentriLock, Geri has created an open, engaging and rewarding culture that encourages employees to innovate, grow and drive success both personally and for the company! SentriLock has increased profitability year-over-year, increased employee retention and improved employee happiness and engagement results continuously. SentriLock was a Cincinnati best places to work winner in 2017!

      Geri is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati’s Masters in HR Management, is a Certified Professional in Human Resource (PHR) and SHRM-CP and holds her Change Management Certification.

      About Justin Clark

      Justin ClarkJustin began his learning and development career at SentriLock in 2012. In his role, he designed the L & D program for SentriLock from the ground up beginning with refining onboarding experiences to ensure the top talent recruited were given the tools to succeed in their role. He has had the opportunity to branch out from onboarding to designing learning programs to ensure SentriLock meets tomorrow’s opportunities by giving team members the learning and development they need today. Justin and his team partner with employees and management to design L & D plans for team members, author eLearning content, and deliver a variety of workshops. With the success SentriLock has experienced in L & D, we have been able to improve engagement of long tenured employees and ensure there is an intentional approach to growth that empowers team members to achieve career success. Justin is passionate about creating holistic growth from day one to retirement to keep employees engaged and focused in the workplace. SentriLock was a Cincinnati best places to work winner in 2017!

      Justin Clark is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati’s College of Business with a focus on marketing and is a Certified Online Professional Trainer.


      How did you get started in your field?
      I sort of fell into L & D! I had graduated from UC with a marketing degree but not much interest in traditional marketing. While working at SentriLock, a learning role came open and after looking into it, found that it was a great way to leverage my passion for learning to help people accomplish their goals! Since then, I’ve been able to build up the learning function at SentriLock to support the strategic direction of the organization!

      What 3 words describe you best, personally or professionally?
      Hippy, Supporter, Nerd

      What did you want to be when you grew up? OR If you didn't do what you do now, what profession would you choose?

      What is a piece of advice you would share with emerging professionals?
      Focus on the experience your customer has with you. Where possible, go the extra mile to ensure they have an amazing experience. If you can create a personal brand that always impresses the people around you.

      What is one of your greatest accomplishments?
      My personal favorite is our Unlock Your Potential Program where we created a career map coupled with learning paths, shadowing, and stretch assignments to help people get from their current role to their dream jobs.

      What are you looking forward to the most at this year's conference?
      New ideas to borrow! GCATD’s fall conference has played a key role in designing and sustaining our learning function at SentriLock.

      What is a talent you have that is unrelated to the work you do?
      I wouldn’t qualify myself as talented at this, but I enjoy cooking!

      What excites you most about the topic you will be sharing at the conference?
      I’m excited to reciprocate the success GCATD has enabled at SentriLock. The topic we are presenting is something born in the Savannah Center so it just makes sense to come back and share the story along with some practical tools to implement!


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