Organizational Learning + Performance

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Leadership Training + Evaluation

ICF International helps organizations improve their processes to select, implement, manage, and evaluate the performance of their investments in leadership development programs.



ICF International is committed to being a thought leader in the field of human capital. We achieve this through research, publishing, and practice. One recent example is the study titled, The Impact of Leadership Development. This study has answered fundamental questions related to the proper techniques for linking leadership development programs to organizational success measures. ICF also commits significant resources toward developing articles, white papers, and courses the explore the most pressing issues in the human capital field.

ICF has a forty-year history in providing expert consulting services in the fields of leadership, workforce development, training and development, instructional systems design, strategic planning, performance improvement, and competency management. To discover more about our research, publications, and capabilities, review the links provided at the bottom of this page. We work in the federal, for-profit, nonprofit, and military spaces and have partnered with a variety of associations such as Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM), Employee Relocation Council (ERC), and the American Society of Training & Development (ASTD).

ICF has a long history of partnering with ASTD. Several of our human capital experts are former ASTD employees, including the former director of ASTD marketing and the former manager of competency research. ICF sponsored and led the Impact of Leadership Development study for many reasons. Certainly we hope to raise ICF's profile in the profession by being recognized as thought leaders in this field, but we also believe strongly in helping to advance the "state-of-the-art" within the profession. Although the learning and development profession has come a long way in 50 years, it still has a long way to go in order to be completely relevant and valued by organizational leaders. This is why the newest study on leadership development impact is so important to us, ASTD, and the field at large. Few people would deny that leadership development programs are beneficial to all types of people and organizations. However, believing that these programs are beneficial is quite different than being able to quantify the benefits.

As practitioners we all have the responsibility to step back periodically and question how well our programs are working, how we can make them better, and how we can help clients feel confident in their investments. To us at ICF International, a study is far more than just an interesting academic exercise, or even an opportunity to promote ourselves. It is a rare opportunity to reflect on the most fundamental questions about our life’s work such as: Does it matter? Does anyone really notice? Should we continue? How can we improve?

For those of us who have been in the learning and development profession for many years, whether it is in the capacity of trainer, facilitator, coach, or consultant, we have had “front row seats” from which to observe people and organizations living, learning, and growing. We believe ICF's investment in research and publishing is a small repayment for the years of learning and growth we have received from our clients and our mentors in the field. Our hope is that we can help practitioners pause and appreciate the degree to which their work touches countless lives. Each leader that we teach has the potential of touching dozens of employees who work for him or her. Each employee in turn has the potential of doing the same for his or her employees, families, and communities. This type of impact will never be measurable; nor should it be.


Related Resources

  • Training evaluation—ICF provides means to ensure that training achieves its instructional goals and objectives and improves job performance. Evaluation results helps guide client decisions regarding course modifications by providing data about the training’s strengths and weaknesses.
  • Leadership development—ICF develops training designed to help managers, supervisors, or senior leaders develop their interpersonal and relationship skills. Developing leaders assists ICF clients in filling an important gap in the knowledge and skill base of any manager level.
  • Executive coaching—The ICF coaching method is structured to deliver on client and organizational performance outcomes, flexible to attune to the client’s needs and learning style, and systemic to addresses the developmental needs and assist in sustaining progress after the coaching ends.
  • Research and development—ICF works with clients to utilize only the best practices in organizational measurement in order to achieve innovative approaches towards program evaluation and return on investment (ROI).
  • Diversity—ICF takes diversity issues away from compliance with Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) and into the hands of an organization’s leadership. ICF incorporates diversity strategies so that they are aligned with the client’s organizational mission and integrated in all of an organization’s human capital strategies.
  • Competency development—ICF supports organizational success by identifying what employees need to know and do to be successful in their jobs. ICF assists clients in better understanding organizational demands and the supply of people available to meet those demands.
  • Human performance improvement—ICF assists clients in identifying business goals and assessing performance gaps through implementation of solutions that remove performance barriers and close performance gaps. These initiatives maximize the organization’s efficiency.
  • Workforce planning—ICF assists clients in identifying the necessary resources to continue current key processes and/or those in the future. The assessment consists of looking for gaps in manpower and skills, which will lead to recommendations on how to fill those gaps.
  • Strategic planning-—ICF supports clients and their leadership in making strategic decisions and envisioning the future and mission of the organization. Strategic planning assists ICF’s clients in determining a set of strategic goals that support their organizational vision and mission.
  • Instructional systems design—ICF provides clients with a process that provides a sound means for determining the “who, what, when, where, why, and how” of training. ICF assists clients in improving the quality and results of instruction, regardless of delivery mechanism.
  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
  • U.S. Department of Education (ED)
    • Federal Student Aid (FSA)
  • U.S. Department of Transportation
    • Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
  • U.S. Navy
  • U.S. Public Health Services
  • Project

    Development of an Executive Development Curriculum, Web Portal, and Briefing

    ICF developed an executive curriculum of external learning and development opportunities and a catalog for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Senior Executive Service (SES).

  • Project

    Organizational Performance and Training Support

    The Federal Aviation Administration Office of the Assistant Administrator for Human Resource Management (AHR) contracted with ICF International to position the AHR organization to undergo the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Assessment.

  • Project

    Level IV Evaluation - Return on Investment

    ICF developed step-by-step procedural guidelines and templates for developing and administering Level 4 evaluations. Because the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) was interested in an evaluation beyond the traditional Level 4 measure of return on investment, ICF recommended a more unique and relevant measure to evaluate the impact of IRS training programs.

  • Project

    Level III Evaluation

    ICF is currently working with Federal Student Aid to design, develop, and implement a training evaluation system. To create the Kirkpatrick Level 3 assessment, ICF developed key behavioral measures aligned to the course objectives and is currently building FSA-specific examples to describe varying levels of proficiency.

  • Project

    Diversity Self Assessment for EEOC MD-715

    Several agencies have requested assistance from ICF International to conduct their Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Management Directive 715 self-assessment regarding diversity in the workforce.

  • Project

    NSWC Dahlgren Division Explorations of Leadership Program (ELP)

    ICF designed the Explorations of Leadership Program as the first of three programs in the Naval Surface Warfare Center's formal leadership development continuum. This program runs 10 days with 80 hours of instruction over several weeks.

  • Project

    The Impact of Leadership Development Programs

    ICF conducted a study to discern what techniques are best used to measure leadership development programs, how effectives these techniques are and finally, to discover how viable these techniques may be in organizations that do not currently use them.

  • Project

    Managing Performance and Contribution Workshop for Managers

    ICF is currently aiding Federal Student Aid (FSA) with developing leaders to achieve its mission. We are engaged in a facilitated process that couples training with coaching to accomplish a mind shift that strengthens manager/employee relationships, targets performance accountability, and focuses on obtaining performance results that satisfy customers and the FSA mission.

  • Project

    NSWC Dahlgren Division Mid-level Leadership Program (MLP)

    ICF designed the Mid-level Leadership Program as the second of two programs in the Naval Surface Warfare Center's leadership development continuum. This is a five-day residential program with 40 hours of instruction and individual coaching sessions.

  • Project

    Multiyear Training Evaluation

    The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety Inspection Service contracted with ICF International to build a comprehensive, cohesive evaluation system for its workforce training programs. Level III evaluation was the emphasis of ICF’s evaluation effort.

  • Jeff NealJeffrey Neal

    Senior Vice President

    Expertise in: Performance Management
  • Rachel Day BarneyDr. Rachel Day Barney


    Expertise in: Organizational Learning + Performance
  • Kate HarkerKate Harker

    Senior Technical Specialist

    Expertise in: Organizational Learning + Performance
  • Pat DzieszkowskiPat Dzieszkowski


    Expertise in: Organizational Learning + Performance
  • Ethan SandersEthan Sanders


    Expertise in: Management Consulting

Contact Info

info *at* icfi *dot* com

+1.703.934.3603 or +1.800.532.4783

9300 Lee Highway, Fairfax, VA 22031-1207 USA

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ASTD logoThe American Society for Training & Development (ASTD) is the world’s largest association dedicated to workplace learning and performance professionals. ASTD’s members come from more than 100 countries and connect locally in more than 125 U.S. chapters and with more than 20 international partners. Members work in thousands of organizations of all sizes, in government, as independent consultants, and as suppliers.

Started in 1943, ASTD has widened the profession’s focus in recent years to link learning and performance to individual and organizational results, and is a sought-after voice on critical public policy issues. ASTD's work includes:

  • Providing resources for learning and performance professionals, educators, and students—research, analysis, benchmarking, online information, books, and other publications
  • Bringing professionals together in conferences, workshops, and online
  • Offering professional development opportunities for learning practitioners, from a Job Bank and Career Center to certificate programs and the only credential offered in the field: the Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP)
  • Serving as the voice of the profession to the media and to public policy makers in the U.S., and collaborating with other associations, organizations, and educational institutions to advance the profession
  • Recognizing excellence and setting the standard for best practices in learning and performance

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