Monday, August 19th, 2013

Comment: Andrew Henderson 03 9822 1301 Monday 1pm-2:30pm or other times 0412 355 519. Email [email protected] (tel 0414 499 887) for book chapter on this topic.

Impact on national productivity, HR conference to be told

Thirty per cent of first-time managers and supervisors in Australia fail within two years because they are not trained or supported for their new roles by their employers or government, a national Human Resources conference in Sydney will be told Tuesday.

The Australian Human Resources Institute conference in Sydney will hear that a survey of 160 decision-makers in human resources, learning and development and organisational development representing over 500,000 employees also shows most Australian organisations (51%) are adopting approaches that do not provide first time leaders with the support and resources necessary to succeed in those roles.

“Loss of productivity, higher staff turnover and the loss of a generation of prospective leaders is the impact of an apparent diabolical and outdated sink-or-swim approach,” said Andrew Henderson, CEO of Leadership Management Australasia (LMA) which undertook the research last year as part of its 13-year L.E.A.D. (Leadership Employment and Direction) Survey.

Mr Henderson is speaking at the conference tomorrow morning about the insights of the decision-makers which are published in LMA’s L.E.A.D. Survey book on workplace trends, presented to the HR industry for the first time at the conference.
He said the magnitude of under-investment and the apparent lack of support for first time leaders was “breathtaking”.

“First time leaders are largely being set-up for failure rather than success,” he said.

“While Government and Opposition leaders have expressed their concerns about our national productivity, here is one simple avenue to address the problem ... fund specific training to help first-step leaders,” Mr Henderson said.

The survey showed 85% of the decision-makers believe it is important (35% very, 50% quite) for government to provide sufficient financial support for the up-skilling, training and development of people taking on their first leadership role.

“This is a clear sign that government has a big role to play in this issue,” Mr Henderson said.

While most consider government financial support of first time leaders to be important, the perceived level of current government support is considered to be largely inadequate, the survey found.

Only 11% believe the current level of support from government is more than sufficient with a further 29% considering it to be just sufficient. The bulk of the remainder (48%) consider that government is under-investing in first time leadership development activity – 32% a little less than sufficient, 16% a lot less than sufficient.

Leadership Management Australasia was established 41 years ago. It now has 150 people servicing 1200 clients across 45 locations in Australia and New Zealand, delivering programs to improve productivity, performance and leadership.  

Leadership, Employment and Direction (L.E.A.D.) Survey.   Running for 13 years, the L.E.A.D. Survey is Australasia’s most authoritative survey of workplace issues and their effect on management and employees. It is now an on-line rolling survey with information released in waves three times each year, constantly updating what is really happening within Australasian organisations. The L.E.A.D. Survey is managed by Adrian Goldsmith of Chase Research. It is commissioned by LMA. Mr Goldsmith designed and conducted previous L.E.A.D. Surveys when a director of Quantum Market Research.

Participants are from all sectors, locations and organisation sizes and include employees (Employees), frontline managers and supervisors (Managers) and business leaders and senior management (Leaders). It draws on previous surveys to analyse changes in the workplace, providing the latest insights, trends and emerging issues affecting business and people management.


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Graeme Willingham, Graeme Willingham Public Relations

P: 0414 499 887


Impact on national productivity, HR conference to be told



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