Training Top 125 Best Practice: Ricoh USA, Inc.’s Emerging Leader Training Program

The program lasts six months and focuses on a different leadership competency or management skill each month, with participants expected to commit an average of 10 hours per month to the program.

Ricoh USA, Inc.’s Emerging Leader Training program was developed to build a pool of individuals capable of quickly assuming a management position within the technology company when needed.

Prior to this program’s implementation, new managers did not receive training until they were promoted, so the time needed to achieve effectiveness as a manager was longer. In addition, new managers did not have a sense of the scope of a manager’s responsibilities or the leadership skills necessary for success, and often did not know whether management was a good fit with their career objectives.

To meet these needs, the Emerging Leader Training Program was designed to provide participants interested in moving into management with a realistic view of a management position’s scope and responsibilities, and an understanding of the competencies and skill sets essential for success.

Program Details

The manager of Enterprise Learning developed the Emerging Leader Training Program relying on business leaders and Human Resources employees as subject matter experts. The program lasts six months and focuses on a different leadership competency or management skill each month, with participants expected to commit an average of 10 hours per month to the program. Through use of Ricoh e-learning, the Ricoh intranet, and virtual meeting technology, leadership and management skills are developed with a minimum of time away from the job. The content of the program is structured around Ricoh’s Leadership Competencies:

  • Self-Development
  • Cultural Alignment
  • Inspire Vision
  • Influence Others
  • Impact Results

Each month, virtual workshops are co-facilitated by members of HR, existing Ricoh managers as mentors, and Ricoh business leaders.

A mentoring component pairs existing leaders within Ricoh with training participants, allowing future leaders to learn directly from existing ones. Mentors meet with participants monthly to discuss the practical application of the skills and competencies being learned.

Online discussion groups allow participants to discuss their application assignments and team projects. The use of authentic assessments gauges Kirkpatrick Level 2 results. At the end of the program, participants are divided into teams and assigned to a real-world case study. Each team develops a presentation demonstrating their newly acquired leadership skills used to solve the assigned case. The presentations are made through virtual sessions and are evaluated by the program manager and other facilitators.

The program originally launched in 2012; the curriculum is updated each year to keep pace with changes in the business and to address feedback from participants, mentors, and HR and business leaders.


In the last two years, 307 employees completed the Emerging Leader Training Program. To date, 14 percent of them have been promoted, and of those promotions, 82 percent involved a promotion to a management position within Ricoh. These promotions include employees from across the organization, showing that the Emerging Leader Training Program is beneficial company-wide.

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