Monday, February 3, 2014

Skills Training and Managers - The Good, the Bad, and the Truly Ugly

See if this sounds familiar:  a manager organizes skills training for his/her team and, on the day of the training, the manager kicks things off and then disappears.  Assuming that the manager has not had this particular skills training, what’s wrong with this picture? 

It is unlikely that this manager will be able to coach or provide guidance to his/her team on the specific skills, reducing that manager’s ability to achieve one of his/her biggest goals – to grow and develop the team.  We can, accordingly, categorize managers into three groups:

The Good:  Those who actively participate in skills training (and are therefore enabled to coach their teams).

The Bad:  Those who attend skills training, but who spend 90% of the time reading and writing emails, often with noisy, “clacky” keyboards (and are, by doing so, unconsciously telling their teams that the skills being learned are not sufficiently important for the team’s attention, either).

The Truly Ugly:  Those who don’t attend at all (and are therefore unable to coach or support their teams).

The moral?  Managers should embrace skills training with the same commitment and “presence” that they expect from their teams…

(There is, of course, a “Great” category for managers as well:  those who attend the training, pay rapt attention, support and reinforce the ideas during the training, and then take steps to learn how to coach their team…!)

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