The current business world is very different to that in which the original assessment centres were designed 50 years ago. The traditional centre still serves well for selection at lower organisational levels, but nowadays the need is for accurate diagnosis of development needs that include the delegate in the assessing process. Time must also be allocated for delegates and assessors to agree on evaluation of performance and sketch out a development plan. Hoechst (UK), seeking to develop managerial staff to director level, decided to adopt this Development Centre method. The Development Centre is described, and its impact assessed by Hoechst's divisional executive director.
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