KB 62 Developing Middle Management


Aditi Chate is a HR professional, working at Atyaasaa Consulting Pvt. Ltd. Presently, she is responsible for handling research THOUGHTS FROM ATYAASAA RESPONSIBILITIES OF SENIOR LEADERSHIP TO BUILDMID LEVEL LEADERS’

Aditi Chate

activities related to training and development. Her areas of interest include organization development, learning and development and competency mapping.

Leaders especially at the Middle Level Management (MLM) are hard to come by! The world of business has always experienced dearth of such people. All those organizations that have put in place an elaborate leadership development programme at the middle level have been able to tide through crisis. Senior leadership needs to consciously take pains to build the desired leadership skills at the MLM level.

Some of these initiatives are:

1. Being a role model is critical. Set of values and attitude demonstrated as success behaviours get emulated quickly. Any disconnect between ‘talk’ and ‘walk’ is bound to create confusion and con!ict. 2. Senior leadership is expected to demonstrate virtually in"nite tolerance to bona "de mistakes/errors committed by team members. They, however, need to possess wisdom to di#erentiate between bona "de and mala "de mistakes and put in place the necessary corrective and preventive measures. 3. Senior leadership also needs to be vigilant about the fear factor prevailing in the team. Fear of not only failure but success too. Delegation of tasks, empowerment to take decisions, sustained reasonability in expectations and constant con"dence to the team that their leader would stand by them during all times and not venture into blame game, helps circumvent this challenge of fear. 4. Constant balancing by the leaders between intrinsic and extrinsic motivational factors and unfettered communication about them within teams is critical to open culture. Appropriate combination of both contributes to superlative organizational performance.

5. Senior leadership would do well by becoming coach for the talent identi"ed to occupy middle level leadership positions. A structured coaching initiative leading to succession planning would ensure a win-win for the senior leaders, the middle level managers, the team and the organization. These measures surely would ensure enhanced engagement of the team both at the material as well as at the emotional level.

BEAN STATEMENT Failure at senior management level is a result of stagnancy in capability at the middle level.

The views expressed in each of the article are solely those of the author.

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