Angela Navarro works to amplify leadership potential for leaders and teams in professional services and private equity. Through Catalyte Leadership Acceleration, a Beecher Reagan Company, the Catalyte team helps clients drive tangible, measurable growth and performance improvements.
Listen to the full interview of Adam Torres with Angela Navarro on the Mission Matters Innovation Podcast.
How did you get started with the business?
As a human capital strategist, Navarro's entire career has focused on search, recruiting, and consulting. When she was working as head of operations and talent at a global consultancy, she saw first hand how many competent and talented executives are hired but then fail to launch - or sometimes even crash and burn. Driven to understand why, she soon realized that these executives need a roadmap to show them how to use their 'leadership DNA' to advance the growth of their organizations as a whole, as well as their own careers.
So, as President and Managing Partner of Beecher Reagan's Leadership Results practice, they pulled together a large dataset of successful placements who performed well at top professional services companies.
Today, she uses insights from her journey, along with more than 20 years of data and algorithms, as she leads Catalyte Leadership Acceleration to help firms assess, benchmark, align and accelerate leaders.
Tell us more about the spinoff from Beecher Reagan.
As part of the Leadership Results Practice at Beecher Reagan, the Catalyte team developed the proprietary Verity Leadership AssessmentSM, powered by Hogan, as a tool to assess leaders and gain insights into how to accelerate performance. As Catalyte grew into its own entity, Verity stayed at the core of the firm's services.
Today, Catalyte's suite of services is designed to accelerate leaders with navigation strategies when they start a new leadership role. Catalyte's services also create hiring and development strategies for professional services firms to increase hiring accuracy, improve leadership engagement, retain existing leaders and the next generation of leaders, and achieve greater success overall.
Verity: A Key Predictor of Senior Leadership Success
For its leadership assessments, Catalyte uses Verity - the only proprietary and industry-specific assessment of its kind - to accelerate leadership talent. Verity is built in partnership with Hogan and takes between 30 and 45 minutes to complete.
"Once you've taken the assessment, you meet one of our executive advisors to unpack the data," Navarro explains. "We talk to you about your leadership DNA through the lens of your current role, at a point in time. Whether you're joining a new role, have been recently promoted, or you're looking to accelerate performance to meet specific growth targets, we use that role context combined with Verity data to help you build a bespoke strategy for moving forward."
Verity assessments offer insights on how a leader would perform in a professional services environment, she notes, comparing them to a data set of fellow leaders who have experienced great success.
"We may find out that you have a high executive impact, are driven commercially, and care about giving back to the organization," she continues. "Then, as we bring together business imperatives and role context, we can offer leaders actionable steps to better integrate into that organization. At the firm level, our work helps support diverse talent and underrepresented minorities. Firms can increase partner performance and benchmark talent to make sure that they are hiring for both culture fit and culture contribution."
How has the feedback been for the assessments done?
To date, Verity has a tremendously high participation rate (85%) and positive feedback (100%). Seasoned executives often lament that they would have achieved more throughout the course of their careers if the assessment, and actionable insights, had been available to them long ago.
Today, Catalyte focuses on creating solid acceleration programs for leaders and teams to ensure their talent is developed to its fullest potential. Catalyte helps firms identify, develop and retain new generations to enhance the organization's culture as they grow.
What's next for you, Catalyte, and Verity?
"We aim to drive growth in more organizations by maximizing the potential of their leaders," Navarro says. "We make a difference for the firms and the leaders that we work with, and we ensure that we accelerate performance one leader at a time."
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