Managers in almost all major industries are currently sending themselves into a tizzy trying to solve the skills gap problem. A long-standing concern, “skills gap” is the term for the void of qualified talent that may be recognized when it comes to a company filling positions.—Andre Lavoie

Would you say skill gaps exist for key roles within your organization? If you said “yes”, you’re not alone. According to a LinkedIn survey of 2000 business leaders, 57% said that soft skill gaps existed, and felt the top four development areas were:

  • Leadership
  • Communication
  • Collaboration
  • Time management

Adding to the dilemma, Melissa Mapes reports that yet another LinkedIn Survey found that:

  • 93% of managers feel they needed more training
  • 47% claimed they never received any leadership training at all

It sounds like both seasoned as well as new leaders are in need of (and want to) continue to develop their skills. Leadership roles have evolved; more time is now being devoted to coaching and mentoring teams and individuals, and this includes being a masterful communicator for successes, needs, changes, progress, and feedback.

There’s still an obligation to ensure goals and deliverables are achieved, but equally important is the need to have a work culture where colleagues are comfortable and engaged, and where they feel trust exists among team members and their leadership team.
Other interesting findings include:

80% of managers think they’re transparent with direct reports; but, only 55% of employees agree.

75% of employees say approachability is the most important quality in an effective manager; and, 50% of employees say they have an approachable manager.

71% of managers say they know how to motivate their team; but, only 44% of employees agree.

45% of managers report they have never received formal management training.

What did you find most surprising, and is there anything you could do to help reduce the skills gaps in your organization?

Very few new leaders receive sufficient training before taking the reins.
–Melissa Mapes