The level of productivity within Britain’s workplaces are being hindered by a ‘competence gap’, with managers believing they are good at what they do but employees thinking their boss doesn’t have the ability to do ‘the job’. This comes from figures released by the Chartered Management Institue (CMI),focusing on falling levels of trust in managers across the UK.

Although 38% of bosses think they are good at their job, CMI’s data shows that more than one in five employees (23%) have lost faith in the leadership they answer to because of their boss’ behaviour. A third (34%) also report they no longer enjoy their job and 39% claim that stress levels are too high – all because of their boss’ attitude and approach.

Patrick Woodman, policy and research manager at CMI, says: “These figures highlight the detrimental effect that unskilled managers can have on employees and raise questions about what employers are doing to ensure their managers are qualified to lead. Good managers who engage their staff and nurture a shared sense of purpose about their work will get better buy-in from their teams and see real results in the form of improved performance, higher morale and lower staff turnover – all aspects of business that many employers are struggling to deal with right now.

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“Managers need to take the time to meet their team’s needs, engaging with them and offering support. They should be focusing on what makes people tick and what helps them deliver rather than a refusal to look beyond the edge of their desk.”

CMI’s figures, based on a survey of 2,000 UK employees, go on to reveal that 56% of employees question their boss’ ability in the workplace. Almost one in five (19%) suggest that they no longer respect their boss as a result. The research also backs up earlier reports** from CMI which found that 64% of employees are motivated by a ‘sense of purpose in what they do’ and 90% only ‘want to work for an organisation that does something I believe in’.

Woodman adds: “Today’s managers have to run simply to stand still and the good managers are the ones who understand how to control the treadmill. They recognise that leadership success comes from adhering to ethics and values, coupled with an ability to motivate and a willingness to listen. We have some great managers and leaders in the UK, but the challenge is for them to reconnect and engage with their teams. Managers and leaders who can will be the next generation of leaders to succeed.”