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Managers Recognise 21st Century Learning Challenge


More than half of managers say they are interested in e-learning, but only 3 out of 10 believe it is used effectively in their organisation, according to a new report from Ashridge business school.

Managers also showed a recognition of the importance of learning and development for staff, with the majority (66%) foreseeing a growth in the establishment and use of corporate universities.

The research, the 'Ashridge Management Index 2004 - Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century' examined the key organisational, personal and development issues for organisations and managers.

It found a strong belief in personal and organisational leadership, with 71% of respondents expressing confidence in people at the top of their organisation. However, just over half the respondents felt that top leaders did not spend enough time communicating with staff. Other areas requiring improvement were better support for virtual teams and career planning.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has also become very important to organisations and employees, with 93% of the 500 managers interviewed saying it is important for them that their employer behaves in a socially and environmentally responsible way. While 88% believe that organisations seen as leaders in responsible business practice will enjoy a commercial advantage.

The information explosion of the Internet and mobile phone is seen as having a detrimental affect on managers' work, with nearly seven out of ten managers saying they are often snowed under, receiving far too many emails and voicemails. This is having an impact on the supposed work/life balance, with 55% of managers taking work home and more than half frequently working more than 60 hours per week.

Despite this, managers feeling that work is a source of stress has decreased from 77% to 63% since a similar Ashridge survey in 1994.


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