No Image Available


Read more from TrainingZone

googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display(‘div-gpt-ad-1705321608055-0’); });

£220bn Cost of Not Training Middle Managers


Underperforming middle managers are estimated to be cutting the productivity of British business to the tune of £220 billion per year.

More than a third (38%) of UK directors surveyed said that their organisation was “paralysed” by ineffective middle management. Close to half (40%) of British directors claimed that their middle management was the single greatest barrier to achieving their company’s objectives.

However, the Hay Group report found that the fault may not lie entirely with middle management. Senior and middle managers alike identified a lack of training and development opportunities and ineffective performance management as key causes of middle management underperformance.

More than two thirds (68%) of senior managers admitted that their middle management colleagues had not been adequately trained for their current position. Similarly, more than half (54%) of middle managers felt that a lack of training was preventing them from performing effectively.

Less than a quarter (22%) of senior managers believed training was a high priority for their organisation. While the average British middle manager, the survey found, had not participated in any formal training for 17 months.

Almost two thirds (64%) of business leaders, along with a similar number (60%) of middle managers, described their companies’ systems of performance evaluation and feedback as inadequate.

Senior managers believed that, given appropriate training and development, middle management could be up to a third (29%) more productive. But their main concern is the impact of these managers on the rest of the workforce, with half (48%) of senior managers complaining that middle managers fail to address underperformance in their teams.

Middle managers themselves felt that with better training, their frontline teams could enhance productivity by the same 29%.

According to the report Corporate Soufflé – Is The Middle Giving Way? a 29% productivity increase at middle management and frontline levels would represent a staggering £220 billion additional annual output in the UK service sector alone.

Giles Walker senior consultant at the Hay Group, said: “Rather than expressing frustration over middle management capabilities, business leaders must implement effective training and development programmes and performance management tools to enable them to improve skills and enhance performance.”


Get the latest from TrainingZone.

Elevate your L&D expertise by subscribing to TrainingZone’s newsletter! Get curated insights, premium reports, and event updates from industry leaders.


Thank you!