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Title: The impact of whole-person development programmes on managerial learning.
Author: Tamkin, Penny.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3497 0038
Awarding Body: University of Brighton
Current Institution: University of Brighton
Date of Award: 2000
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This thesis explores the impact of whole-person development programmes on the development of managers. The research on which this thesis is based is in two stages. The initial stage compared the ways in which personal development plans were created in 14 organisations and identified that the means by which the plans were created had a significant effect on the enthusiasm and commitment of the learners. This led to a review of management development programmes to try and identify in more detail the factors that influence impact and outcomes. Interviews were conducted with 55 individual learners, 11 subordinates and 21 line managers and explored how these managers learnt, what they learnt and what impact this learning had on them and their organisations. These participants came from five case study organisations who provided a range of management development opportunities. The learning that seemed to have had most significant impact centred around 'soft skills'. This is particularly interesting because it is these soft skills that have proved to be difficult to develop and assess. There emerged some key themes that help explain these changes. The first step in this journey of development is that managers should know themselves. Much management development focuses on the external world and the development of knowledge and skills that are 'out there' - understanding budgets, where business strategy comes from, what a good appraisal looks like and so on. The really effective managementdevelopment programmes placed considerable emphasis on the internal world. This development of the internal world focuses on both knowledge and skills - what are my strengths and weaknesses, how do I normally react when put under pressure, what techniques can I use to overcome my reluctance to deal with conflict? Two processes appear to be essential if individuals are to develop greater internal skills and self-knowledge: feedback opportunities and support mechanisms. Those that have received structured feedback within a supportive and trusting environment have used this to change themselves for the better, becoming more proactive, more self-confident and more empathic in their dealings with others. Feedback can play a positive role in enhancing self-esteem through increasing selfknowledge. However feedback is not always welcomed. In an unsupported environment, feedback can be perceived as threatening when it tells the individual something that they did not know about themselves and are not ready to integrate into their selfknowledge. In these circumstances a vicious circle is set up. Support from those that the learner has come to trust appears to be crucial if feedback is to be warmly received. Once an individual has integrated such feedback into their selfknowledge and accepted it, there would appear to be an increase in the value attached to feedback and the desire to seek it out
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Management development; Support networks