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Management Training – ‘Make It Real’

In a previous article I made comment with regards to ‘buyer beware’ when engaging the services of consultants, management trainers and business coaches, especially the ones who have never actually been ‘hands-on’ involved in managing a real business, or better still businesses…

As a pro-active external manager working with a number of retained clients I have the very good fortune of being able to see business both as an outsider looking-in, as well as, as considerable experience of an insider looking-out.  

This can be extremely useful; it can also be extremely frustrating...

One thing is for sure, whilst a good consultant, trainer or coach can provide direction and wisdom, they cannot make their audience move into action, action is a choice and unless there is a determination and willingness to influence future outcomes, then meaningful change will not occur.  

There is a surprisingly wide gap between good intention and willingness to change and, the actual momentum of change and I for one believe that closing this gap is the responsibility of the consultant, trainer or coach who must not only have the wisdom of what needs to be done but also the courage of conviction to on occasion to become actively involved, leading by example to ensure that progress really can be made. 

The fear or excuse of ‘non-active engagement’ being defended on the basis that such involvement could be construed as acting in the capacity of a shadow director is most unlikely unless such engagement moves from being part of the management team to a controlling role – Section 251(1) of The Companies Act 2006 describes a shadow director as being a person upon whose directions or instructions the directors of the company are accustomed to act.  

If the consultant, trainer or coach becomes concerned that such a position maybe arising, then my advice is to act with conviction and ensure that your contributing role at the company is professional and open to scrutiny, do not loose sight of the fact that in our capacity as external experts, the customer has every right to expect expert help in improving their business performance... 

‘Tell me and I will forget; show me I may remember; involve me and I will understand’ - Chinese proverb

At we are on your side.

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