How to build the skillset of your people managers. What should you be focussing on in 2024?
With 2024 around the corner, it is important to think about how you can enhance the capabilities of your line managers and consider what you should be focussing on in the year ahead. Here are a few suggestions.
Diversity, equality and inclusion
The Equality Act 2010 outlines that organisations and their employees cannot discriminate against anyone based upon their age, gender reassignment, disability, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, marriage or civil partnership, and sexual orientation. This act is not just about work life – it covers all protected characterisitcs in normal everyday life. By law you are required to treat all human beings equally and with respect, regardless of any of their personal circumstances.
In 2024, ensure managers receive training on equality, diversity and inclusion in the workplace. If a manager understands how to prevent discrimination and harassment and also promote inclusion, it will help employees be engaged and more productive at work.
Employers should have in place policies on equality, diversity and inclusion. However, having these policies in place could still mean an employer is liable for acts of discrimination carried out by its employees.
Training is important and the type of training must be of sufficient quality and be held regularly. This will make sure the training influences the employees who received it to prevent real acts of discrimination from occurring (or if they do ensure they are dealt with quickly and fairly). It is important that employers don’t treat this type of training as a ‘tick box’ exercise and consider holding refresher training on a regular basis.
Improving workplace culture
Work culture and the work environment are a key topic for all employers, especially management and HR professionals, as they’re responsible for it. Managers need to apply all aspects of the Equality Act into their everyday working life. Especially when it comes to:
- Distributing work evenly and fairly
- Ensuring people are managed as adults
- Setting clear work objectives that are underpinned by achievable goals and targets
- Communicating clearly what the company expects and wants their workforce to achieve and deliver
Employers should assist and support their managers to create a healthy learning environment that’s built on trust. The focus must be on developing a culture of fairness and equality, where everybody’s involvement and contributions are considered.
Skills for the future
Consider what skills employees need to learn that will help them progress in their current roles. Also consider if reskilling is required to help employees learn new skills to progress into a new role. For 2024 consider what skills you require from your line managers to take your business forward and remain agile. Is a focus on digital skills and the use of artificial intelligence in your business required? See our guide on AI in HR. Retention of staff in 2024 is key by focusing on continuous learning and development in a challenging recruitment market.
Develop managers soft skills
The aim is to give managers the interpersonal skills required to succeed in diverse and ever-changing work environments. In 2024 consider soft skills training, emphasising on emotional intelligence which includes empathy, effective communication and self-awareness. These are all key skills for great managers. Good communication will help to resolve any conflicts in the workplace. The aim will be to equip managers with the skills to motivate and lead their teams effectively.