Every climb to success comes with its own stumbling blocks. There are inspirational quotes aplenty about tackling challenges on the road to achieving greatness. This notion carries over into the quest to groom and develop strong managers. The good news is that facing these challenges head-on and making sure you arm your managers with the knowledge and skills they require to persevere will result in solid and lasting leadership skills. These skills will then permeate everything they do and trickle down to the rest of the front line they manage. It will create a cycle of engaging your workforce to positively perpetuate your brand with great success.

Here at Root, we conduct an extensive amount of research –  not only so we stay current on business and market trends; but also so we can alleviate some of the heavy lifting for you! Why? Because we think it’s important that you have more time to focus on strategic initiatives, especially when it comes to infusing your management with strong leadership skills.

Three Classic Pitfalls in Developing Managers

1) Functional-Only Leadership Skills Training

Process is important. All managers need ample training on how to complete tasks, what procedures to follow, and other tactical areas. However, you can’t forget about the people skills. If your managers are your front line, interacting with others in your company AND your customers, they need to understand the importance of engaging others.

2) Disjointed Leadership Skills Training

If you want fluidity, you must provide some training that includes real-world application. It’s not enough to isolate some key areas for training, such as conflict resolution and communication. Managers need to see situations in context so they can understand which leadership skills will help address them in the real world.

3) How to Sustain the Leadership Skills Being Taught

You can’t just throw managers into a few training sessions, call it a day, and move on. If you want managers with highly developed leadership skills, YOU need to invest the time and resources to help them get there. Part of that team effort is to ensure there are plans in place to sustain the training they receive. It’s like maintenance -and the better it is – the more equipped your managers will be!

Four Ways you can Prevent Leadership Skills Development Efforts from Falling Short

At Root, we are not just in the business of alerting you to challenges without sharing some actionable solutions. We’ve got your back!  We’ve curated a handy shortlist.

  1. Get the senior leaders on board. It must be bought into from the top.
  2. Give managers the right foundation. Start them off with what they need, and they will be great learners.
  3. Focus on accountability. Everyone has to know they need to show up and participate in order to gain personally – and as a team, and for the company to gain as a whole.
  4. Remove all barriers. Don’t let anything stand in the way of your people getting the leadership skills training you know they need.

If you want to delve deeper into each of these areas, check out our Watercooler article, “From Victims to Heroes: Four Ways to Make Your Managers Your Best Assets”.

Remember, your managers are assets you can’t afford to take for granted. You have the power to grow and nurture them into successful leaders who will drive the future successes of your business. Invest the time in them, and the return will be significant.

August 25, 2015


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