• Lack of management training causing culture problems, finds CIPD

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  • 27 Sep 2013
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Efforts to encourage positive manager behaviours ‘are being undermined’

More than a third of line managers have not been trained in how to supervise people creating relationship and culture problems, according to CIPD research.

The institute’s survey, titled ‘Real-life leaders: closing the knowledge-doing gap’, revealed that 24 per cent of managers are often forced to put the interests of their organisation above the interests and well-being of their team with damaging results.

In addition, managers are under pressure to deal with more immediate task oriented priorities ahead of people management issues. The research showed that employers’ efforts to foster positive manager behaviours are being undermined by the lack of a consistent message of what organisations expect of managers.

And, more than a quarter of companies admitted HR had not taken any action when they have received poor feedback on line managers.

However, managers who prioritise healthy employee relationships can help drive high performance working rather than undermining it through poor practices.

Following the recent culture crises in public health and banking, the CIPD has urged businesses to strengthen support for line managers with robust training and by clarifying their managerial roles and expectations, assessment processes, and incentives.

Ksenia Zheltoukhova, the CIPD’s research associate, said: “We hear organisations lament the lack and quality of leaders, but we aren’t seeing evidence of their commitment to drive good leadership and management practices.”

Citing the research, she said that for 29 per cent of managers in the survey ‘other priorities’ stand in the way of ensuring that the interests of the team members are supported. “This raises questions about the priorities that managers – and the organisations – attach to the well-being of their staff,” she said. “These findings are a wake-up call for businesses to re-align the systems and structures in place in their organisations to support leadership development.”

Nearly half (48 per cent) confessed that individuals were promoted into managerial roles based on their performance record rather than people management or leadership skills.

Zheltoukhova added: “Businesses address issues such as poor customer service or faulty machinery straight away, whereas bad management across organisations is tolerated to a shocking degree.

“It’s time for business to identify and address the roots of bad management, recognising that a more consistent approach to training and supporting leaders at all levels of an organisation is needed to drive sustainable performance.”

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Comments (3)
  • people do not know much about management training courses. But these courses are really so necessary. i personally am having training.

  • Having just completed a piece of work within my organisation (public sector), relating to the effective implementation of HRM processes by first line managers, this CIPD article comes as no surprise. One of the major limitations identified in my research was that competing work pressures were a major concern amongst FLMs, and that operational priorities were placed before staff management issues. My real concern is that, culturally, this will not change in the foreseeable future due a lack of understanding of the underlying problems.

  • Excellent piece - having very recent experience of Management of people in Banking I can fully recognise the issues here. I particularly like the point made ...“This raises questions about the priorities that managers – and the organisations – attach to the well-being of their staff,”