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​The leadership and management skills gap: what’s the true cost?

Tuesday 22 December 2016

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According to the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) 2016 National Management Salary Survey, poor leadership and management performance is still being rewarded. Almost a quarter of the UK’s underperforming managers received a bonus this year, and 38 per cent of CEOs/directors, whose performance was rated as “not meeting expectations”, received a financial bonus – as high as £55,969.

Even more worryingly, 87 per cent of employers surveyed identified recruiting people with specific skills as a key challenge. It’s a problem that creates huge business costs. Startlingly, insolvency practitioner trade body R3 estimates that poor leadership and management are behind the majority of corporate failures in Britain.1

The problem with training

According to the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES), British organisations spent more than £45 billion on L&D in 2015.2 Yet research suggests that when it comes to training leaders and managers, they may not be getting their money’s worth.

The CIPD 2015 Learning and Development Survey highlights that 80 per cent of organisations plan to conduct leadership development activities in the next 12 months, with a key focus on equipping line managers to improve staff performance, changing the organisational culture and improving the skills of existing leaders to think in a more strategic and future-focused way.

Over half of the L&D professionals also say growing future senior managers/leaders is one of their top three L&D objectives. About a third report their leadership activities will focus on developing high-potential individuals as future executives, improving the performance of top leaders and improving staff engagement levels.

So, it’s high on many people’s agenda and there are numerous solutions out there. The challenge that many face is knowing which option will be most effective for their organisation’s culture and needs.

Explore further

CMI 2016 National Management Salary Results
CIPD 2015 Learning and Development Survey


[1] R3 press release, Bad management to blame for nearly 60% of corporate insolvencies, 9 July 2010
[2] CMI website, Nearly Half of Managers Failed to Receive Any Training in 2015, 28 January 2016

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