CIPD survey highlights skills gap

A new survey from the CIPD has highlighted a leadership skills gap in senior management in the UK. The 2012 Learning and Talent Development Survey found that nearly three quarters (72%) of organisations have a deficit in their leadership and management skills. And despite the help that learning and talent management could provide in bridging this gap, the same survey reveals that only 11% of these solutions are aimed at addressing skills shortages.

Most organisations (73%) reserve talent management activities for their ‘high potential employees’. 38% of organisations include junior managers in their talent pool, 48% include middle managers and 62% include senior managers. So whilst there is training for current managers, there is a shortfall in providing for the next generation of leaders. Perhaps as a result, only 6% of organisations rated their talent management activities as ‘very effective’.

According to Vincent Belliveau of Cornerstone OnDemand, who sponsored the survey, ‘Whilst learning and development is a reasonably mature discipline, talent management is frequently misunderstood’.

However, the survey does point to a clear view of the leadership skills that are most lacking. Performance management, in particular setting standards for performance and dealing with underperformance, was the area of most concern with just over half of the respondents citing it as a gap (56%). This was followed by the ability to lead and manage change (47%) and leading people and people management (46%).

Most organisations (80%) reported that they will be carrying out leadership development activities in the next 12 months. But with half saying that their economic circumstances have declined in the past twelve months (rising to three-quarters in the public sector) it will be interesting to see what the results are in 2013 and to what extent these critical skills gaps have been addressed.

Click here to read the full CIPD survey report

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