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Will Mitchell


Director of Consulting

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Blog: The necessity of developing management resilience


The resilience theme is continuing in my blog posts, this time due to a recent news item I’ve read.

According to the latest Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development‘s (CIPD) quarterly Employee Outlook survey, UK middle managers are feeling the squeeze as a result of the economic downturn.
The results highlighted that almost half (49%) of middle managers say they are under excessive pressure either everyday or once or twice a week, compared to a survey average of 37%.
I’ve mentioned in the past the importance of developing resilience in leaders and this survey highlights to me the growing need for organisations to focus on this. The fact that such a large percentage of respondents feel they are under excessive pressure shows there is a need for middle managers to be resilient and able to handle the inevitable pressure they will face in their role.
I cannot stress enough the effect this could have on an organisation. As the results of my colleague’s research (mentioned one of my previous blogs) showed, there is a link between resilient attitudes and levels of employee engagement.
If management at any level are struggling with their own engagement due to poor resilience levels, this will filter down through the rest of the company. What this will quickly lead to then as a disengaged workforce who are losing motivation in their role; and is this really the work environment you want for your business?
I think, and hope, that we will see these survey results changing for the better if organisations and HR commit to developing resilience within their leaders. 

Will Mitchell is director of consulting at talent management consultancy, A&DC.

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One Response

  1. resilience

    I agree that resiliency is important for all staff to allow high performance in challenging times however I can’t help but feel concern for the comment "the importance of developing resilience in leaders and this survey highlights to me the growing need for organisations to focus on this".  In the context of the article shouldn’t the growing need be for organisations to focus on why the middle management are under increasing stress?  

    Pressure is certainly expected to maintain performance but surely the fact that 49% of middle managers feel under excessive pressure should be of more concern regarding the working environment?  Why are they feeling this increase?  Has restructuring / cost saving / role broadening etc left the average middle management team being squeezed too hard?  If we concentrate only on resilience then aren’t we running a risk of ignoring the underlying reasons? 

    For every hundred men hacking away at the branches of a diseased tree,
    only one will stoop to inspect the roots.
    – Chinese proverb

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Will Mitchell

Director of Consulting

Read more from Will Mitchell

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