Ingram Blog

Preparing Leaders for the Future

Ingram Content Group encompasses more than 10 facilities worldwide. With that many locations, leaders need to be prepared to coach, communicate and create successful environments.

So enters LEAD. In 2015, 20 operations associates graduated from LEAD (Learning, Engaging, Achieving, and Developing), a year-long frontline leadership program. LEAD is designed to provide support, training and success from our operations leaders. Associates joined over 90 LEAD graduates from distribution centers and manufacturing facilities across our network.

LEAD focuses on enhancing leadership knowledge and skills through four interactive, engaging classes:

  • The Critical Role of the Lead
  • The Power of Effective Communication
  • Coaching for Success
  • Creating a Motivating Environment

Leads are the frontline leaders who ensure work is completed by an engaged team of associates safely, quickly, and accurately. The four classes were designed with real-life scenarios for operations. Leads and associates set learning goals for each class, which helped them to relate the information to their own experiences. Between class sessions, leads and associates meet with their supervisors and managers to create and implement action-learning plans using the skills learned in class.

“Because leads are often the first point of contact for associates and the communication hub between associates and management, we understand the importance of providing tailored opportunities for our leads to learn, grow, and develop,” explains Karen Nash James, manager, learning and development for Ingram Content Group. Leads are a critical connection between associates and the specific workflow required to meet customer demands as well as those of supervisors and managers in each location.

“Many people often underestimate what moving into a leadership role entails and how the position will require them to think differently. LEAD does just that. Our associates who go through LEAD come out better prepared to either take on a new leadership role or perform better in their existing role,” says Dave Elleman, vice president of operations at Ingram Content Group.

Currently, associates at our La Vergne textbooks facility are going through the LEAD program. They are gaining knowledge to help them manage the workflow of 800+ agency associates during peak season. Additionally, textbooks supervisors and managers also attended a LEAD workshop designed specifically for them to help coach and support their leads in becoming more effective, successful leaders.