Poll shows board members lack leadership training

The
majority of HR professionals think their board members are in need of
leadership skills training, although they are all confident in their own
ability to be strategic business partners, according to two polls released
today.

In
a survey of 319 people on HR Gateway.com, 85 per cent of respondents believe
their board members need leadership training, and only 14 per cent disagree.

Gary
Ince, head of the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM), said the
results show a severe lack of communication between HR and the top table.

“These
are staggering figures,” he said. “I would expect this result from a question
asking about boardrooms in general, but not when it is pointed at people’s own
boards. Too many firms pay lip service to HR, so the department may be feeling
excluded.”

Many
firms look at HR in the same way as an insurance policy, Ince added. It needs
to be there, but firms don’t like paying for it, he explained.

Ince
said that if board members are failing to communicate with HR, then they really
do need leadership training.

A
separate poll of 273 visitors to HR Gateway.com reveals that HR professionals
are confident in their own ability to be a HR strategic business partner.
Nearly two-thirds (65 per cent) said they are confident about their current
skills levels.

HR
Gateway Consulting’s Vanessa Stebbings, said: “With the growing trend of shared
services and outsourcing, the opportunities are opening up for HR to become
more strategic. However, many of the commercial skills needed for such work are
not yet part of training for a career in HR.”

By Ben Willmott

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