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The Four Secrets to Choosing Management Training Programs

How to maximize results from management training

Have you been tasked with choosing a management or leadership development programme for your people? Are you uncertain about what to look for? What are the pros and cons of sending your people to a hotel for a five day residential or a back to business school?

Follow these four simple steps to ensure you make the right choice:

1. Choose a program that produces business results. Why do you want your people to become better leaders and managers? So that they create stronger business results. A course that does not produce results will not justify the expenditure. Choose a course that produces tangible results in your business from the very first seminar - after all, why wait to see the ROI?

The material covered in Governing Change can be turned into results quickly. This is why my interest remained for days 1-6. The theory can be put into practice and, to paraphrase my own presentation, I have the results to prove it.

Tim Palin, The Metal Centre

2. Look for robust, proven content. If your people are going to create real results, they'll need practical input which they can implement quickly and effectively. It will be hard for your people to call complex models and abstract theories to mind when they are under pressure - and when they are under pressure is precisely when they'll need to use what they've learned from the course they're attending.

For any manager it bears relevance to their principal objectives for success. Every session had content that I could relate to my everyday working environment and equipped me with the tools to improve myself and my team between each session.

Jane Bradshaw, Gould Alloys

3. Insist on a structure which demands that delegates implement what they are learning back in the workplace, and supports them in doing so. The best structure for this is a day a month. That way delegates can experiment in modifying their approach, create results, report their progress back to their group, and build their understanding over five or six months, rather than attending a three day event and then not implementing half of it and forgetting the rest.

Anyone in management, no matter what level of experience they have, will learn from this course. This is not a course where you go away feeling inspired but then never apply what you've learned. The course forces you and supports you in developing your skills.

Sophie Davies, Victim Support

4. Ensure that the program is run by people who are expert in developing the leadership and management capabilities of others, rather than experts from your particular industry, who may have little to impart other than a dressed up version of their autobiography.

A 6 month Mitchell Phoenix management program that, frankly, changed my life. It broadened my outlook and since completing it my enthusiasm soared and the techniques he showed us to deal with difficult or sensitive management challenges have been invaluable to me, and of course my business.

Ian Ford, Watts Group

Finally, if you are looking to develop not only a group of individuals, but the whole culture of your organisation, choose a development initiative which is robust enough to scale up to produce an organization-wide effect.

The Governing Change training course has equipped our managers with the necessary tools to manage their teams and achieve a high level of success. It enables all of us to take a consistent approach when managing our people Andy Howitt, Regional Director, Aalco

And of course, treat any tangential approach with caution. A program which seeks to achieve improvements in the business environment through participation in an unrelated activity, such as outward-bound sessions or actor's trust games, is unlikely to create lasting results.

Having been on numerous training courses I have no hesitation in recommending the Mitchell Phoenix Course as the best yet. There is no management-speak or pointless exercises - instead the course is tailored to each and every delegate due to the focus on practical results and making improvements in your workplace.

More Stories By James Donnelly

James Donnelly is Managing Director of Mitchell Phoenix USA based in New York. Mitchell Phoenix also has offices in London, UK. He brings over 20 years of experience of working with CEOs and companies around the world across the spectrum of industry. He specializes in Corporate Culture; Leadership Development; Communication; Change Management and Strategic Thinking. He is an expert in leading change from the top down delivering measurable results and lasting insight.

Donnelly’s passion for leadership development and change management was ignited through his early career experiences. His background is predominantly in sales and marketing. He began his career with IBM before joining the Royal Air Force, gaining the rank of Flight Lieutenant. He then ran sales teams at AT&T. These three vastly different cultures sparked a lifelong interest into what made companies great.

Donnelly has delivered over 10,000 hours of seminars, speeches and presentations to large and small audiences from the boardroom to the frontline. He is credited with making fundamental differences to people’s corporate lives. He is one of the principal architects of Mitchell Phoenix’s programs, principles and philosophy.

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