Why investing in management and leadership has never been so important in the UK

With the challenging economic environment that has, and continues to face the UK, investing in management and leadership has never been so important as global competition is becoming increasingly stiff, and effective leaders are essential to ensure the UK’s economic recovery and a strong place in the future international marketplace.

Economic Uncertainty

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The UK has experienced economic uncertainty for a number of years now, and this uncertainty shows no sign of diminishing.
This has impacted investment in management and leadership as organisations have seen reductions in headcount, redundancies, rationalisation, and a ‘reduction’ of departments and the closure/rationalisation of training facilities. However investing in strong management and unwavering leadership is the only way that organisations can weather these difficult economic conditions. Indeed:

“Organisations that adopt high performance working practices which are underpinned by high quality people management can expect to receive a 20% increase in productivity and profitability.”

‘Lack of Management Training stalls business growth,’ July 11th 2013.

Increasing Global Competition

The UK is operating in an increasingly competitive global marketplace, which makes the need for great leaders and managers more important than ever. A survey by the Institute of Leadership and Management has identified that UK businesses are failing to capitalise on internal talent, with poor skill levels having a negative impact on 93% of UK businesses.

This survey also identified that 47% of UK businesses felt a current lack of internal staff capability to move up in the organisation was halting the supply of effective leaders and managers through their businesses, and 43% of organisations said they had no form of talent plan at all.

Charles Elvin, chief executive of the Institute of Leadership & Management says:

“Now more than ever, businesses should be investing in leadership and management development at all levels to ensure strong business performance and effectiveness.”

He adds:

“The clear link between management and leadership capability and productivity means that organisations should be fully focused on developing managers not just for their current role, but for the future of their organisation. The UK needs to address the current shortage of management and leadership skills revealed in this survey in order to compete on the international stage.”

How to Improve Management and Leadership in the UK

The CIPD annual survey report of learning and talent development identifies that the most effective methods of cultivating learning and talent development is on-the-job training, in-house development programmes, coaching by line managers and instructor-led training delivered off the job.

Organisations need to make these investments in management and leadership to ensure their future success in the international marketplace.

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