The responsibilities of a manager are rather diverse and generally relate to four main areas: planning, organizing, leading or directing, and supervising (Whetten & Cameron, 2007). Depending on the sphere of management, the manager should both possess knowledge in the chosen domain and have good communication and leadership skills, along with other necessary management characteristics. It is more common for managers to “grow out” of a certain knowledge domain than to become a manager right after finishing education. Some of the activities of a manager include supervising staff and controlling performance, setting and achieving goals and objectives for the department and/or for the organization, human resource activities such as recruitment and selection of employees, career development, training of personnel and succession planning (Mathis & Jackson, 2008). The managers often have to control the finances of the department, work out rewards and compensations for employees, control discipline, motivate employees and solve conflicts.
Such large scope of responsibilities makes management training necessary even for experienced managers. Effectiveness of the manager directly influences the effectiveness and performance of the whole department, and thus management training programs are a must for virtually every organization. There exist different types of management training programs such as programs on employee relations, safety and emergency, programs dealing with planning and time managements, trainings on business ethics, programs showing how to develop and implement major policies and procedures, trainings devoted to human resources and appropriate laws, programs on leadership and activities focused on customer services (Whetten & Cameron, 2007). Types of management programs which might be necessary for an organization are determined by the type of organization, its sphere of activities and the characteristics of management staff.
In general, there are five steps common for every training program: analysis, design, development, implementation and evaluation (Bohlander & Snell, 2009). In the first step, a needs assessment should be performed, and objectives for the training program should be identified. In the design phase, information for each of the objectives identified by step 1 should be gathered. Also, the interaction of the training program with other working needs should be considered. At the development stage, learning materials are developed. Here it is necessary to ensure that learning materials are easy to access, cover various activities and it is clear how they relate to the needs of the target group (in our case, the newly appointed managers). Implementation phase is the time when the training program actually takes place. At this step, such issues as practical tasks, forms of feedback, different management findings and observations and class expectations and outcomes are considered. Finally, the evaluation step is very important: impact of the program should be studied after the training program and in some time after the program (e.g. in half a year). The results of evaluation should be taken into account for further training programs and for similar trainings in other departments of the company.
In my opinion, for the group of newly appointed managers the training program should cover all aspects of manager’s responsibilities and focus on core issues and objectives which they might need for working immediately. If the employees have no previous management experience, then the most important step in this program is the first one – analysis. If the analysis yields correct goals and objectives of training, the program will be effective. It can be recommended to perform a training needs analysis and to consider organizational goals as well. The newly appointed managers should necessarily take part in this process; also, it might be useful to ask help from people who occupied these management positions in the past or to involve experienced managers from other departments. Learning styles of the employees and their personal characteristics should be considered during the analysis step (Mathis & Jackson, 2008). Thus, I believe that analysis step will allow to identify major topics and areas which should be covered first, and the training program should be based on these objectives.
Bohlander, G. & Snell, S. (2009). Managing Human Resources. Cengage Learning.
Mathis, R.L.& Jackson, J.H. (2008). Human resource management. Cengage Learning.
Whetten, D.A. & Cameron, K.S. (2007). Developing management skills. Prentice Hall.