A number of training and coaching sessions we have run recently have really driven home what most learning and development consultancies would advocate ... that any development around behaviours should start at the top of an organisation.
One piece of coaching in particular has bought into sharp focus how dangerous it can be to offer development to your managers, without ensuring their line manager is role modelling good management practice.
This particular coaches – let’s call her Jane – has been promoted into a management position and to the company’s credit she has been offered coaching to help develop her management skills. She has been a joy to work with... receptive to ideas, self-aware, keen to improve and, critically, has worked on all her agreed actions in between sessions...so she is really seeing the progress she is making and getting results. Which has been very motivating for her.
Or at least it would be, if her manager was to play their part. In fact her manager is so hands off as to almost not be there. They have shown no interest in Jane’s coaching, bar a cursory “How’s it going?” and have provided no feedback on how they see her progressing. One to ones are scheduled in, but are often moved or cancelled at the last minute and if they do happen are brief and focus on operational issues only.
Not only is Jane frustrated by this lack of support, she is also, quite rightly, starting to question why she is working hard to build open and honest relationships with her team, yet she is not getting anything like that herself.
In fact the frustration is leading her to question her next steps in her career... and actually, the company are in danger of losing a very valuable member of staff.
Without good management skills being displayed at the top, the very investment you are hoping will aid staff retention and improve performance, will just have the opposite effect. Don’t let this happen in your team.
For more information about how we can help develop your managers, click here
Stella Chandler and I founded Focal Point on a shared belief that a training course run in isolation doesn't work. We passionately believe there must be support both before and after the training or coaching session itself for it to make a difference. When I am not facilitating sessions with clients or looking at ways to grow the Focal Point business, you will find me in a calming yoga class...