A few months back I spoke at an event in Manchester as one of three speakers. We had never met, nor had we planned what we were going to say. Ok not great, however, as a collective, there was one common theme in our speeches – managers are key to every aspect of your business. Sadly, there was an overwhelming agreement that organisations fail to invest in developing managers and equipping them with the tools to do their job.

Why do we under-invest in management skills and what impact does this have?

Many managers are promoted from within, and what a great business strategy, IF you have the right potential, skills and behaviours available to you, as well as the right development programmes and opportunities for them to grow into their new role. Managers are often promoted because they are high performing in their technical role, and they have potential but all too often they are left to just get on with the job. This often leads to managers feeling overwhelmed, frustrated and sometimes hating the people management side of their job, not to mention that teams become disengaged, which impacts on their performance, the bottom line, culture, retention and possible reputation. No company can afford to have a disengaged workforce.

Gallup has been studying the correlation between employee engagement and company performance for around 30 years. In their State of the Global Workplace report, a staggering 87 per cent of employees worldwide are not engaged, and companies with highly engaged workforces outperform their peers by 147 per cent in earnings per share. Managers account for at least 70 per cent of the variance in employee engagement scores.

So let’s make 2023 the year to give managers the confidence and skills to be able to engage, motivate, communicate, support and develop their own teams as well as the ability to deal with the tricky side of people management.

Where and how do you start to change some of this? This is a complex challenge; there are many places to look, analyse and change, however, Rome wasn’t built in a day. My advice would be to start having honest conversations with your managers to truly understand how they feel about being a people manager and what support they need.

We’re here to help! If you have thought about putting your managers through some training then check out our 7 week Managing People Programme, where delegates get the chance to learn new techniques to become a great people manager. Click here for more info on this, or to book your place you can email hello@realisehr.co.uk and one of our lovely team will talk you through next steps. So, what are you waiting for?