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Intel: Launching an Innovative Way to Develop Leaders


The Leadership Development Forum (LDF) was first delivered in 1998 and received an overwhelmingly positive response from participants. Every LDF since the pilot has generated a "wait list" of employees interested in improving their leadership skills. Participants of the fourth LDF program made an impassioned plea to Fab 12's senior staff requesting that the staff attend LDF and model the way for the factory. As a result, the entire twenty-two-member senior staff attended LDF in 2000. Since its inception, eleven LDF programs have been delivered at Fab 12 to a total of 204 middle (group leaders) and senior (department manager) level factory managers.

Although the first LDF was delivered to Fab 12 leaders only, subsequent programs have included participants from other Intel business groups in an effort to proliferate LDF throughout the company. In 2002, LDF was first piloted outside of Fab 12 to Intel's Supplier Group and Corporate Quality Group. The participants' feedback about the program resulted in an expanded pilot to proliferate LDF on a large scale. LDF is now being offered to other Intel business groups across the United States and in Asia.

In 2000, the LDF program was highlighted at the corporate Intel Manufacturing Excellence Conference (IMEC). IMEC, an annual event attended by a worldwide audience of five hundred selected Intel employees, shares papers, presentations, and exhibits to proliferate "best known methods" across the company. A rigorous selection process ensues to select the exhibits and presentations (only eighty of 1,100 are selected). The focus of IMEC is primarily technical; however, due to LDF's unique design and success it was selected for the conference. The LDF program philosophy, key components, and results were shared in a presentation following the conference's keynote speaker, Intel's vice president of manufacturing. IMEC established LDF as the premier leadership development program throughout Intel.

The lessons learned are important for anyone in any organization coping with the daunting challenge of how to develop their management's leadership abilities.

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