Would you let someone drive a forklift without any training? How about letting an apprentice loose with scissors on their first day? Or having a new recruit present an important bid to a key prospect?
Of course you wouldn’t. But maybe you would promote one of your team to be a manager and then not train them!
Business success comes with its own challenges, not least of which is managing a growing team. So, to make our lives easier, we pluck our very best person from the comfort of a job they know really well, and promote them to the lofty heights of management.
Fabulous! Reward for their great performance, and a signal to the rest of the team that there is potential for progression within your business.
But then what happens..?
Reality sinks in, and without any training or coaching your highly-motivated new manager begins to flounder. The team begin to lose confidence and the mutterings start around the coffee jar. Your new manager goes from loving their job to dreading coming to work.
It’s a sad truth that managers are less likely to receive training than any other type of employee.
Recent research found that a staggering 71% of businesses don’t train their new managers effectively, if at all. Managers who have responsibility for developing team members, measuring performance, maybe controlling a budget and other resources to deliver results for the business.
Scarily that means that a hefty percentage of businesses are being run by managers simply flying by the seat of their pants.
I’m sure the natural leaders and gifted organisers will thrive on the challenge, but what about the rest?
Those who are ‘consciously incompetent’ have a chance of improving – they’ll recognise their shortcomings and do what they need to to develop the skills they lack.
The dangerous ones are the ‘unconsciously incompetent’ – those who think they know what they’re doing and plough on regardless – a downward spiral of the ignorant leading the ignorant.
Like a dropped pebble in a pond, the lack of initial investment ripples through the business.
Give your managers a chance to be the second line you need them to be. Focus on their training and continuous development, and they will do the same for your team.
Do one thing: think about the managers in your business. Do they have the skills they need? What can you do to develop them?