The training managers need to be better people leaders

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Too many new managers don’t receive adequate leadership training. In fact, a Gallup poll found only 40% of managers in the U.S. feel their developmental needs are being met. Many feel uncomfortable giving and receiving feedback, so they avoid having these necessary conversations.

Today’s workers expect more frequent feedback from their leaders. There are now five generations in the workforce, and in order to retain and develop this complex workforce they need to be talked to and coached much more often. That being said, even managers who hold weekly one on ones need reminders and guidance around how to conduct these crucial conversations.

All too often, that one-on-one time is spent addressing the most pressing matters instead of touching important, future-focused topics. This is critical, as focusing conversations on future development rather than simply reviewing task lists boosts employee motivation and improves their performance.

As companies increase their agility by adopting fluid, cross-functional teams, managers face new obstacles. They become less involved with their team’s day to day work, yet still must coach, recognize and develop them. To do this well, managers need transparent insights into cross functional team progress and the ability to generate feedback from multiple sources. Another challenge is staffing these cross functional teams. Most organizations struggle because they do not have current insights into the performance and readiness of the wider workforce.

In fact, Deloitte research showed that more than 50%of executives believed it was easier for employees to find new roles externally than within their own companies.

To help your managers be better, your organization needs to adopt a more continuous performance process, and stop relying on antiquated practices such as annual performance reviews. This continuous model is an essential part of increasing innovation and organizational agility. A complete program includes quarterly goal setting and ongoing alignment and ensures all the crucial conversations happen on an ongoing basis. More importantly, it also provides the needed workforce insights to support internal mobility, skill development and succession planning.

Adopting this new model of performance management is a big change for any company, and it requires support from technology that is robust, adaptable and flexible. HR technology is now directly supporting business productivity and this is especially true for performance management.

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