Are your line managers the best thing about your business?
It was interesting to read in this month’s edition of People Management magazine that according to research over the past decade by Jon van Reenan at London’s Business School and Stanford’s Nick Bloom, the reason that certain companies have outperformed apparently similar rivals is down to management practices. Put simply, effective managers have had a significant impact on the discretionary effort put in by employees, which in turn has increased productivity, performance and loyalty.
According to the CIPD’s 2013 Learning and Talent Development Survey however, 72 per cent of Organisations reported a deficit of management and leadership skills within their Organisations, with managers facing particular challenges with handling difficult conversations, performance management, coaching and development in particular.
The report does concur however that when employees are satisfied with their line manager, the results are felt in terms of team performance and satisfaction with the wider organisation.
In order to gauge how effective your Organisation’s management practices are, imagine that your employees were given the following questionnaire and were asked to tick all of the boxes which they felt they easily recognised about their line manager:
- Monitors performance and agrees SMART objectives
- Encourages self-monitoring of performance
- Gives regular and frequent performance feedback
- Holds regular one to one meetings with those staff who report in to you
- Gives negative feedback constructively, immediately and privately
- Spends more time praising than reprimanding
- Regularly and frequently coaches staff
- Identifies both long and short term development goals with staff
- Identifies and arranges on-the-job development activities for staff
- Discusses with staff what they have achieved over a given period
- Discusses with staff what they have learned recently and how they will apply it
- Ensures all staff have the information they need to do their jobs
- Ensures that staff have the information they want to feel comfortable within their role
- Has and communicates a vision of how the team will develop or change
It is fair to say that providing management training alone is tantamount to applying a sticking plaster over any issues or concerns you have about management capability in your organisation. Rather, aligning Organisational practices with any training provided will significantly increase the chances of improving management capability and developing the talent that already exists.
For a free consultation on how to align management training with Organisational practices, please contact us on 07887 994300