Cultivating and Developing Leaders For Future Growth



Pfizer Global Manufacturing (PGM) produced organic chemicals more commonly known as “active pharmaceutical ingredients” (API) or “drug substances” for a wide range of products. It supplied the ‘building blocks’ of health care products to the region and the global market through Pfizer’s extensive manufacturing and distribution network. PGM constantly focused on pushing its technical and innovation limits in product manufacturing and distribution, and at the same time, leadership and management development is also an area that was constantly being reinforced.

In 2006, PGM decided to focus on developing their leaders to be able to lead their workforce to address emerging challenges in the global healthcare and pharmaceutical industry. Specifically, PGM wanted the senior management team to bond and work together as an effective and cohesive leadership team. The company did not want to go full scale on continuous improvement like other companies which undertook programs, such as Total Quality Management or Six-Sigma in which employees were rewarded solely based on the results they achieved. PGM wanted to develop their leaders through small steps, such as internal sharing and involving its entire management team so as to allow its corporate culture to be gradually assimilated and embedded in their leaders’ thinking and behaviours.



PGM engaged PACE to roll out a customised The Leadership Challenge® (TLC) workshop over a period of 6 months by synergizing Pfizer’s leadership model with PACE’s milestone leadership development approach. This ensured that the leaders could acquire and develop desired leadership behaviours and competencies step-by-step through experiential learning while continually seeking out opportunities in the workplace for transfer. After each milestone workshop, the leaders took a break to apply skills and techniques back at work before attending another milestone workshop. This allowed each individual to consolidate and anchor his/her understanding and behaviours.



Communications, bonding and working relationships among senior management were reported to have improved for PGM’s first extended leadership development program. The leaders were said to be more engaged in their tasks and with their team members after having spent 6 months learning and practising leadership competencies.

The leaders also came to understand and appreciate each other both as individuals and as colleagues with strengths and weaknesses working in the same organisation. They re-discovered how their personal values could be aligned with PGM’s corporate values and beliefs.

“I would say that PACE provided Pfizer with a very personalized approach to leadership development. PACE facilitated the discovery of my inner strengths and also to bond with my other colleagues and understand their strengths and weaknesses. These are values that are already present in all of us but PACE helped us to discover them. PACE facilitated this shared journey for me and my team mates, helping me to bond with my natural working environment.”

– Dr Prasad Kanneganti, Director, Quality Operations, Pfizer Global Manufacturing