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Abstract

Representatives from a random sample of 300 U.S. corporations were interviewed by telephone to examine their use of formal developmental relationships as a management development strategy. Based on an 82 percent response rate, findings were obtained regarding the frequency of programs using formal developmental relationships, expectations regarding future use of formal developmental relationships, program characteristics, program visibility, and program effectiveness. In addition, comparisons between organizations with programs and organizations without programs were made on the basis of organization size, sales volume, employee trends, sales trends, and organizational age. From the 246 participating organizations, 52 respondents indicated that their organization had at least one management development initiative currently in place that paired employees with peers, senior managers, or outside consultants. Specific types of initiatives discussed by the respondents included one-on-one mentoring, apprenticeships, team coaching, peer coaching, executive coaching, action learning, and structured networks. Organizations with initiatives in place tended to employ more individuals and have larger sales volumes than organizations with no programs in place.