It’s one of those classic chicken and egg scenarios. Should a person be trained for a leadership role then receive the promotion OR should a person demonstrate some leadership potential, take on a few small roles, then get the promotion, training and pay increase?
According to a recent study released by CareerBuilder, 58% of managers had not received any management training before starting to manage others. While I’m in the training business and I would love it if companies trained employees before giving them leadership roles, the study results don’t surprise me.
On some level, I totally understand the rationale behind this thinking. Organizations are reluctant to spend money on training employees for leadership roles until they see the employee is ready and committed to take on the additional responsibility. It’s the equivalent of waiting to train someone on a new piece of equipment until they actually need to use it. This mentality comes from being witness to situations where companies have proactively trained employees only to have them quit or get fired right after the training program was completed. And as much as we remind ourselves, “Training was the right thing to do.”, it doesn’t change the apprehension when faced with doing it again.
If companies want some sort of sign from an employee before they make a training investment…great. But this is where the CareerBuilder survey hits home. It goes on to have survey participants rate their current supervisor’s performance. Top concerns employees have with their managers include playing favorites, no follow-through, lack of feedback and unrealistic workload demands.
Once an employee is placed in a supervisory or managerial role, they need training. Even if they were in a managerial role with a prior company. Every business has their own philosophies and it’s important for managers to understand exactly what the company’s viewpoints are when it comes to employee coaching, performance, discipline, etc.
I believe most employees understand the “do the job then get the job” mantra. If companies plan to subscribe to that, they need to provide training along with the money and title. It’s a real disservice to a new manager not to give them the whole package.