In a turbulent economic environment, the ability to adapt to internal and external change is crucial to a company's survival. But adaptation requires leadership, and companies continually struggle to find leaders who can drive them through periods of transformation. The demand for leaders is high, and the supply is shrinking as experienced professionals from the baby boom generation retire with little succession planning in their wake. Most would agree that people who can create a vision, define strategies, and lead the execution of those strategies are rare. The dilemma most organizations face is that they need more leaders than they currently have to achieve their goals. What makes the challenge seem even greater is the popular belief that leaders are born, not created; leadership is seen as a quality that cannot be taught. On the surface, successful leadership development may appear to be an insurmountable problem. Fortunately, the leadership void is not as large as commonly believed. Many of the qualities referred to as leadership competencies (organization, change management, communication, project management, etc.) are management attributes. As any leader knows, a capable manager is extremely valuable. Interestingly, many leaders also recognize that they do not, in fact, make good managers. Effective management and proper execution is crucial to the success of any leadership vision. The good news is, these managerial attributes and the skills behind them, can be taught, learned, measured and improved on a systematic basis. Companies and government agencies are recognizing the value of developing high quality managers to ensure leadership success. They are identifying and cultivating professionals to provide capable management, and in the process they are ensuring that the leadership vision is supported through execution to achieve business results. How can organizations develop the management capability they need to execute on the leadership vision? Skills measurement systems provide an effective solution by dramatically accelerating the identification, acquisition and improvement of critical management skills.
What types of managerial skills support leadership today?
Have you ever received an email that was intended to get your
cooperation in a project, but had the opposite effect?
Have you ever sat through an interview where the interviewer did all the talking?
Have you ever met a manager who seemed to be constantly "putting out fires" with no strategic direction?
Each of these scenarios is familiar to anyone who has ever been affected by a lack of key management skills. Fortunately, each of these skills can be taught, learned and measured. From managing people to interviewing and project management, a variety of specific skills and proven techniques can help managers do their jobs better. Ultimately, these skills can have a profound effect on the day-to-day execution of a leadership vision. If leaders don't have these skills themselves, they must have a clear knowledge of who has these skills within the organization. That's where the manager plays an important role—providing the skills that put the leadership vision to work.