Meagre managers adding to UK talent drain

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Written by Seun Robert-Edomi on 23 February 2015 in News
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The latest Towers Watson Global Workforce Study reveals that a third of managers are not coaching employees on how to grow in their role and a quarter are failing to accurately evaluate performance in personal development reviews. Managers are also falling short when it comes to communication, with only roughly a third involving employees in decisions that affect them

The poor relationship employees have with their manager is one of the top reasons they are considering leaving their current employer according to new research from Towers Watson, a global professional services company.

The latest Towers Watson Global Workforce Study reveals that a third of managers are not coaching employees on how to grow in their role and a quarter are failing to accurately evaluate performance in personal development reviews. Managers are also falling short when it comes to communication, with only roughly a third involving employees in decisions that affect them.

These managerial failings are having negative consequences for wellbeing in the workforce, with a lack of support, recognition and feedback from supervisors being cited among the top causes of stress for UK workers. Although it seems employees are sympathetic to the challenges managers face in doing their job well, with 37 per cent acknowledging that their manager doesn’t have enough time to handle the people aspects of their job.

In addition, it seems managers are not being empowered in their role by their organisations, with 21 per cent saying they do not find the online tools and resources provided to help them manage direct reports easy to use. Furthermore, just half of managers said the information they need to update their team on key organisational changes is readily available.

Radha Chakraborty, UK leader, talent management and organisational alignment, Towers Watson, said: “We know from our research and consulting with clients that employers are currently facing huge challenges in retaining high performers and those with critical skills in their workforce. Our findings also show that companies are underestimating how important their immediate team dynamics are in securing the long-term commitment of their employees.

“Time and resource pressures are an ongoing theme for UK PLC but implementing efficient and clear processes, as well as equipping managers with the right technology, can help them to improve the working environment for their team members.”

The managers surveyed mostly had less than ten direct reports and tend to spend the same amount of time with all of them rather than prioritising the best or new hires.

Chakraborty added: “If time is tight, it makes sense from a business point of view to target managerial support towards those individuals who will have the most impact on the bottom line.”

 

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