Growing Middle Management

The Challenge

The new Chief Information Officer of a major Canadian bank had her hands full trying to steer through a huge transformation and reorganization due to years of inertia, complacency and a culture of entitlement. Her senior team was under intense pressure to get the job done. They, in turn, were relying on middle management to quickly step up to a higher level of performance and accountability.

The challenge was that the majority of the middle management team was inexperienced and didn’t know how to work as a team. Senior leaders had no time to develop their skills or make sure they were reaching across silos. Middle managers were also being asked to restructure their business units and identify those people who would take on key roles to better serve the rest of the organization.

The Solution

We stepped in to assess and coach the 18 mid-level managers using various assessment methods, including a 360-degree feedback method to get a sense from subordinates, peers and supervisors of their management style. We also facilitated group learning and team-building sessions to provide more formal and shared experiences, giving the middle management group a taste of working as a well-coordinated team.

The Result

  • Significant growth in levels of initiative and accountability among middle managers – critical to the transformation
  • Middle managers showed more confidence and understood what they needed to do to continue to improve
  • Contributed to a smooth reorganization and an integrated and well-coordinated team

Next: Turning Conflict into Collaboration

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