When we run our Innovation Workforce course, we suggest that line managers and supervisors don’t attend. There’s a very good reason for this – when we ask the delegates what the major barrier to innovation is, the answer is usually management related, and more often than not, it’s one (or more) specifically named person.
Historically, this is an area that we haven’t delved into. We’ve deliberately designed our courses to take a bottom up approach focusing on the workforce, so our trainers can use their own skills and tools to focus on the management team, line managers and supervisors. However, we’ve now realised that there’s a much better way around this.
The reason for the behaviour of these “barriers” tends to fall into one of two main categories:
- The pressure of the day to day job means that they don’t want to commit time to what they see as a meaningless task (or one which does not contribute directly to their outputs)
- They suffer from a sense of insecurity, and don’t want their staff members to generate better ideas than them or have responsibility for doing something which has more impact than they have (after all, THEY’RE the team leader!)
In both cases, the answer to the problem is simple:
Work with these people to set their expectations, and help them to understand how working as a team will improve their performance and productivity, hence making them and the whole team improve.
So, to complement our 2 day Innovation Workforce courses we’ve now developed a short, complementary session for Line Managers and Supervisors which is designed to help them understand:
- why their staff are doing this course
- what they’ll get from it
- how this contributes to their team’s objectives
- how the line manager / supervisor and support and get involved too
If, after competing this short session, they still don’t want to get the best from their workforce and capitalise on their collective knowledge, experience and creativity, then they’re beyond our help. That said, we do have a fantastic network or highly qualified trainers and coaches who have the skill set to get the best out of them! It’s great what happens when you work as a team – especially if it’s well led or supervised.
If you’re interested in either taking or delivering Geminus Training’s Innovation Workforce course, please contact us for more details.