• International Workplace
  • 24 January 2017

ILM calls on UK businesses to address ‘leadership lag’

The Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) is calling on businesses to boost leadership at all levels of the workplace. Launching its new manifesto at the end of last year, ILM cites research revealing employees lack confidence and inspiration from leaders at work.

According to its manifesto, businesses must address the ‘leadership lag’ as a key priority in 2017, in order to boost success as the UK embarks on its post-Brexit journey.

ILM, the leading specialist provider of leadership qualifications in the UK, found that over half of employees (53%) will consider moving jobs unless their organisation changes, suggesting a considerable frustration with current leadership and business structures. In its five point manifesto, ILM urges businesses to stop taking a remedial approach to leadership and instead plan ahead and focus longer term.

The research, which surveyed employers and employees across the UK, also found that 28% of UK workers feel they don’t have a trustworthy and inspirational leader – topping the list of what they lack most at work. Nearly one in four (24%) say that leaders in their organisations make them feel stressed and less than a quarter (23%) would be very likely to recommend their company’s overall leadership.

And it seems that whilst businesses acknowledge the importance of good leadership, they also see room for improvement. With a challenging period of uncertainty ahead, it’s no surprise that having inspirational leaders ranks as the top HR focus for the businesses surveyed, with half (52%) citing this as key priority.

However just 31% of HR professionals feel very confident about their organisation’s supply of leadership talent for the next three to five years.

Leadership at all levels

“Leadership doesn’t just refer to people at the top – and we need to stop thinking of it in this way,” says John Yates, Group Director at ILM. “Many people view leadership as a necessary step in career progression, as opposed to something they want to actively take on. But it’s actually a set of skills that should be learnt from your very first day at work, and honed until your last.”

When asked what changes they’d like to see in their organisation, the top answer given by both employees and employers was to get leaders back on the ‘shop floor’ more often (31% and 37% respectively). This is followed by more investment in training and development. And with 58% of businesses planning to refocus their learning and development activity due to Brexit, UK businesses have a huge opportunity to invest in teams and boost motivation and productivity across the board.

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International Workplace is one of the foremost providers of ILM courses and has supported students from all over the UK to achieve one of their internationally recognised qualifications.

ILM is Europe’s leading management organisation and partners with more than 80,000 individuals and organisations.

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