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How to Create Competent Leaders


Inviting individuals to step up into a senior role is an exciting time. Now they’ve got to prove their credentials. You could leave it to them to manage projects, colleagues and resources or you can invest in developing their potential.

Management roles are diverse and you know they will face challenges. By offering training and mentoring you can hone their skills and get them up and running quickly. This article explores why training and mentoring are key to preparing competent leaders that can tackle the multitude of demands.

Equipping New Managers with the Skills for Success

Hiring new managers is a punt, as very few candidates offer the full package. They may have leadership potential and the drive to put ideas into action or technical insight and an innovative attitude. So, now they are in post and all fired up. You can leave them to muddle through and learn by experience or you can provide support.

Training and mentoring offer the means to immediately develop strengths and fill gaps in knowledge and experience. They help your new leaders to grow in competence, so they can confidently manage projects, people, time and resources. As a result, you are rewarded with effective managers who are equipped to take your business from strength to strength.

Why is Being a Good Manager Important?

Before we explore the role of training and mentoring in developing leadership potential, we need to understand why this is important.

Firstly, one of the primary reasons to invest in training and mentoring is to lower staff turnover. In a Visier study, undertaken in 2022, 43% of respondents had left a role because of their manager. The same study revealed that 85% of employees believe a good manager is important for workplace happiness. Further information on the findings is shared in People Management.

Secondly, poor managers extract lower levels of engagement and productivity from their team. When employee skills aren’t recognised and their needs are unmet, motivation and commitment to their work drop. This impacts morale, customer service, company reputation and ultimately, profits.

Additionally, when lacking in confidence about specific parts of the role, ill-equipped managers avoid difficult tasks. They focus on what comes naturally to them, the areas that they are good at and neglect tough decisions or conflict resolution. These challenges don’t disappear, but they can spiral into greater issues. These can be detrimental to the business and costly to resolve.

What’s the Difference Between Training & Mentoring for Managers?

So, managers, the team and the wider organisation benefit when skills are cultivated through training and mentoring. However, you may be wondering why your managers need both. Let’s outline the difference between the two.

Management Training

Training – a great way to upskill, build awareness and develop leadership potential. It teaches individuals specific knowledge, which might include:

Management procedures – hiring, staff appraisals, conflict resolution, implementing company policy

Communication skills – listening, inviting feedback, appropriate responses, negotiation

Management skills – strategic planning, decision-making, problem-solving, resource management

Training typically focuses on company priorities. It’s about getting what you need from the new manager. What skills will empower them to drive things forward, tackle challenges, engage other employees and achieve business goals?

My Advanced Leadership Training has been booked by companies across the UK that are looking to optimise the potential of new business managers. I’m already getting bookings for Leadership Essentials, Communicating with Impact and Influencing Skills training through to summer 2023. I also offer a range of online courses covering common challenges faced by leaders.

Mentoring for Leaders

Mentoring offers guidance, support and a sounding board. It is responsive and flexible to the needs of each individual. The employee drives the focus of each mentoring session by identifying what they need support with. What are their priorities?

In essence, mentoring ensures that managers feel equipped for the role and have backup when faced with difficult issues. It also holds them accountable; keeping them on track to achieve personal and professional goals. That’s good for them and good for the business.

My VIP Mentoring has helped many leaders to flourish, to get the most from their team and to nip problems in the bud with prompt, decisive action.

Invest in Career Progression

If you have new or recently promoted staff who are taking on a role in management, training and mentoring can aid successful career progression. Your business will reap the reward of the investment, so let’s make this a year of achievement!

people sitting working together

Training & Development That Delivers Value

Is your industry struggling to fill vacancies, retain employees and have adequately skilled teams? These issues can be addressed through training and development. However, there