How is your company preparing its future managers and leaders?

Lorna Fairbairn, Learning and Development Manager for John Laing Integrated Services discusses the benefits of ILM training programmes for FM service providers.

David Kentish asks: Is the question of how you are preparing your future managers and leaders a recurring topic at management and board meetings within your organisation? Is it on your agenda at-all? If not, why not?

Recently published research shows that 93 percent of companies say that low levels of management skills are having a direct impact on their business achieving its goals*.

Depressing, isn’t it?

Even in today’s tough economic climate, not all companies are struggling. Many have seen business growth and an increase in profits. So what do they know that others don’t?

The answer may be that they have put in place a management succession programme, promoted qualified individuals from within the organisation, and are not continually buying in talent from outside. The benefits of promoting from within may seem obvious, yet often ignored because of the need to fill a gap NOW, and no-one in the department is considered capable of moving up. Why has the right training not been made available to staff who show promise, so that a smooth transition can be achieved without fuss?

A holding operation
Classic examples of actions that will keep you as a holding operation include:

1) Promoting someone from within who has technical competence, but is without people and/or management skills;
2) Hiring someone from outside that may take three to four months just to get up to speed, not to mention the hiring costs incurred.

Do you have a pool of leaders and managers skilled to fill future vacancies?
Only 57 percent of employers do**. If you’re not one of these, it may be time to give it some serious thought. Companies that have board approved and funded leadership and management programmes for all areas of their business are more likely to experience growth.

The UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) say in a report: “UK employers will need to have identified, recruited and developed an additional 2.2 million managers between 2007 and 2017. They predict that over 1.3 million managers are needed to replace those retiring from the workplace, while more than 0.8 million will be required to manage the increasing number of people being employed nationally. This presents both a challenge and an opportunity for UK business.”

Short-term, quick fix solutions will tend to lead to a managerial and leadership skills deficit over the long-term, so a broader, more strategic approach is required.

Will you develop within?
Where will your first line managers come from, the team leaders, your bid managers, your senior management and strategy planners? Here, there and everywhere, or developed from within?

At first glance putting a development plan in place may seem expensive, however, this should be viewed as both a cost saver and leading to future business growth.

We have talked before about a ticking time bomb in FM whereby very soon there will be a severe shortage of managers who have the experience and qualifications to lead their businesses. I’m sure that you can see this happening already in FM!

A company that has a good supply of able managers who understand the organisation, its goals, values and culture and who can be internally promoted, meaning no recruitment fees, will experience less risk in giving them more responsibility as they are a known quantity and it gives an opportunity to recoup the investment made in their development.

The Institute of Leadership & Management
The Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM) is the largest provider of management education qualifications in Europe, building the skills of 90,000 managers and leaders each year. Since its inception in 2001, close to half a million managers have enhanced their careers through an ILM qualification.

When choosing where to go to get the right training, support and guidance on the relevant qualifications for your staff you need to partner with a company that has a track record of delivering the best.

Liz Kentish Coaching is an approved ILM centre and has been at the forefront of training and coaching for the FM industry for many years working with both FM teams as well as service providers and is well known and trusted by these companies.

With over 50 ILM modules to choose from there are qualifications to be gained in all areas of your business at all levels. Liz Kentish Coaching can also design tailor made modules for ILM awards, certificates and diplomas.

We run bespoke programmes for companies and open FM manager courses for individuals. To find out more about how we can help develop you and your staff call or email to arrange an informal consultation.

By David Kentish

About David Kentish – David is a qualified coach and runs the company’s ILM accreditation programme. David understands how learning and gaining qualifications can help an individual to progress, and the benefits that will in turn bring to their organisation. Building on the aptitude and potential of each individual, David encourages positive behaviour through the elimination of negative thinking.

*Source ILM
**Source ILM


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