Royal Mail to focus on management coaching

The
Royal Mail has doubled its budget for leadership coaching following criticism
of its management in a report.

The
group has developed a two-year, £1m leadership coaching programme that will be
open to all 1,200 managers and is designed to run alongside its performance
management system.

Mark
Whitley, service development director, said the measures would help managers
engage with employees at every level of the business.

Through
the programme, over 400 managers have been set a number of clearly defined
targets and a personal plan, which is evaluated on a monthly basis.

The
changes have been initialled after the Sawyer report claimed that local and
regional managers lacked communication and leadership skills. The report said
that coaching was the key to preventing further industrial action.

“A
massive number of our postmen are optimistic and proud to work for us – the
question is of confidence in management,” Whitley said.

Sue
Marsh, head of leadership coaching at Royal Mail, said managers would learn to
adapt their approach to make them more effective in dealing with staff. The
coaching also introduces a framework to help managers address their individual
plan.

“Effective
questioning is used to draw out responses as well as role-play, where
candidates have to adapt their behaviour. We outline the approach managers
should be taking on a day-to-day basis,” she told delegates at the HRD
conference.

The programme focuses on team dynamics and relationship
building.

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