I just read about the results of an OI Partners (a global talent management firm) survey with these sobering statistics; “Inadequate management skills such as leadership, motivating people, and building team work are the top reasons why executives and managers today are not working out. 65% of surveyed companies cited deficient management skills as the main reason why executives are derailing. It is also the No. 1 reason why managers are not succeeding, according to 56% of employers.”

The OI Partner’s press release also reported “the surveyed employers also want executives and managers to adapt to changes that have occurred in their jobs and workplaces. 53% of companies cited inability of managers to deal with changes as a major barrier to succeeding, and 45% of employers said executives also need to make adjustments.”

This research demonstrates a meshing with our leadership and organization development experiences. In my days with The Achieve Group, our partner Zenger-Miller (all now part of AchieveGlobal) extensively studied the evolving roles of supervisors, managers, and executives, and the skills they needed to excel. I have revised the headings in this chart ZM developed to summarize their findings:

Traditional Management Increasing Participation and Engagement Leading a High-Performance Culture
Direct people Involve people Develop self-motivating people
Get groups to understand ideas Get groups to generate ideas Get diverse groups to carry out their own ideas
Manage one-on-one Encourage teamwork Build teams that manage more of their own work
Maximize the performance of the department Build relationships with other departments Champion cross-functional work process improvements
Implement change Initiate change Sponsor innovation to meet customer needs

The major skills deficiencies cited in the OI Partners’ survey is rooted in managers and executives misunderstanding their role and the skills they so badly need to effectively lead their teams and organization through these changing times. Many “leaders” in assigned leadership roles are really “technomanagers” who don’t understand the critical High-Performance Balance of Technology, Management, and Leadership so crucial to their success.

How are your skills? How about the supervisors, managers, or executives you lead or support? How do you know?