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For some time now must leader always find it difficult to differentiate between leadership and authority? I took out time to go to some of the bigger organisations, schools and universities to really find out the courses of poor leadership and management. It is believed that both the universities over courses that has to do with management and leadership especially those in the human resource departments. All these are done to arrive at good leadership and management.  Some big companies in Nigeria sent their senior staff abroad to learn more about management. Like dangote cement in Benue state sent some of their management staff on training to learn more about leadership and management programs so as to boost the company’s quality of staff and to increase efficiency.  The CEO of dangote cement was ask how much he has spent for that program, he replied that he has spent over 10 million on leadership and management training. Most chief executives officer from over 500 companies including Rantito dairies limited were ask on the program that is more capital intensive 50% of their responses was on leadership and management training. They see it as a top priority for the future. Some of them went on to say that leadership and management program is their top priority. Few of the respondents said that their companies have effective leaders globally. According to MCKinsey’s article 2014; he said that over 500 executives were asked to rank their top three human-capital priorities most of them pointed out leadership and management programs as their main focus. DDI and conference board 2014-2015 leadership survey estimates that around $50 billion per annum is spent on leadership development worldwide. Almost two-thirds of the respondents identified leadership as their number one concern. Most companies suffer poor management and leadership, either because of lack of fund for proper training or they did not employ the right staff.  But that’s not withstanding leadership and management really failed from my point of view due to four major reasons:

1. Overlooking context
2. Decoupling reflection from real work
3. Underestimating mind-sets
4. Failing to measure result.

  • OVERLOOKING CONTEXT: the word context is one of the major parts of an efficient leadership. Everybody is different with talent and discipline. Mr A might be good in mathematics but English language will really be a thorn on his flesh. What I mean is that a particular leader might be very good in a particular job description but he might not really be effective in another job description. Studies have shown this. An example of this context also is the company double crown in Nigeria; double was doing very well in the late 70s to early 80s and the CEO was always given credit for the growth and the wide range the company can cover in the market. But early 90s when there was poor out comes the managers couldn’t channel discipline to the small unit in terms of finance. And this continued until double crown folded up. Some companies do not run leadership program, some might even go ahead to pick workers that are not really qualified for the job. Because they do not want to pay more to a qualified person. Before a company should go into this program such company must understand very well what they really want; if the company is the type that breed talents then they should get managers that have the qualities on talent building and development. Let me still use Dangote cement for instance as at early 2014 the company set up a program to recruit young graduates with a minimum of second class upper to be trained in various field based on your talent and discipline. They can run this program because they have competent staffs that are good at nurturing young talents, future manager and owners of businesses.  So a company that really understand the program they are running should focus on the program to avoid  wasting too much fund looking for people that will suit for the purposes they are lacking.

Take the a Nigerian banks for instance; those in the marketing departments should include the workers that have good persuasive ability to draw customers to the bank.  Even in the military, before you absorbed in the military you must pass through thorough training for you to become a military personnel.   I could remember when Rantito dairies limited needed an auditor; they called for interview, after the interview, the successful ones still went on further training for about 2 months before resuming their various offices. How did the training take place? The audit department was separated into three: the internal auditor, outstation auditor and audit assistant, the various head of audit took those workers and train them base on their responsibilities. This really helped the company in the audit department because the newly employed workers were well trained.

  • DECOUPLING REFLECTIONFROM REAL WORK: What I am trying to say here is the ability of the staffs under training to retain exactly what has been passed to them by their trainers.Â

Take the university environment as an example; why are some student having a better CGPA than the rest; this is due to difference in their level of understanding of what has being taught and the difference in their ability to understand and retain what they have read. This is the case in most of the companies that set up training programs for not only the young graduate even the adult ones. A well experience trainer will pass his knowledge down to the trainee at the end of the day just a hand full will understand what the trainer has instructed them to do or what the trainer has taught them. This has really affected a lot of things in the companies today. This is the mistake that most organisations make; take for instance in a research institution, the need for an effective vaccine was urgent and the whole of the management staff of the company gathered together to produce the vaccine. Another junior staff of the institution who is a member of leadership and development program took his time to manufacture the same vaccine; he presented it to the board and the board criticized his effect that the company has already manufactured the vaccine. The junior staff got angry and quit the job. What this company failed to understand is that just of the staff manufactured this vaccine that took the entire staff time to manufacture the same vaccine, now you see the company has lost a talent. Companies should learn how to appreciate talents, at time encouragement matter a lot in the competent ability of most companies.

  • UNDERESTIMATING MIND-SET: these days most trainees and employee wonder why most bosses behave the way they do. Some of bosses might be harsh, rude and too strict. These will make most of the entire participant uncomfortable. This will make some trainees that are supposed to do very well in the training might perform poorly in the training. If the leadership and management program produced a staff that is not effective, this might not really be the problem with the staff but the way he or she was trained. But in a leadership and management program, if the bosses and trainee are motivating, encourage and believing in the trainee, there won’t be discomfort and their behaviour won’t change. Take this theory for example; promoting virtues of delegation and empowerment, this theory will be very effective if the trainee and participant have a good mind-set. But if the trainees have a fixed or negative mind –set this theory will be rendered absolute. Now let us take a company that is doing well for an example, in a market most companies flopped not because they do not have good products but because of the winning mind-set. Another company with the mind-set that they have a target to meet will do everything possible to meet that target. They were able to do this because there mind is fixed on that target; so they achieved the result.
  • FAILING TO MEASURE RESULTS: Most big companies today failed because they are not taking the record of the performance of their businesses; all these are simply because they failed to apply the leadership and management program; they took it as if it is less importance.  Leadership performances in each field should be measured. Ignorant of this can hide the less contributing part of the company. Every areas of a company are supposed to be making profit. Why do company have expertise? This will help the company monitor the performance of the trainees.  Another theory here is the employees feedback mechanism; a company that have a good feedback mechanism; I think will be more effecting in measuring the result of the performance of their employees or participant. Leaders are to monitor the trainee participation in the target being assigned to them by their leaders. Take sterlin bank as an example, after the recruitment of fresh graduate for internship, target was set for them to meet. Most of the trainees were uncomfortable with the target. But some that already have the idea about the leadership and management  already know what is required of them, carried the interest of the bank at heart strived to meet up with the target; at the end of the day, the ones that meet up with the target were successful and were retained by the bank. When of them the employee was ask about his motivation, he told the management that he attended a leadership and management program on how to meet target and to set up a standard for your company; that was his motivation.
  • Conclusion: if most of the bigger companies today will work on the above mentioned 4 key words, I think there will be improvement on the leadership and management programs.
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