The North Leadership Centre at Newcastle University have, over the months, successfully delivered a middle management training program to private sector companies Cintra HR & Payroll Services and Bastion Security.
The training programme covered a wide range of topics such as: Self Awareness, Communication, Time Management, Delegation, Change Management, Developing People and Building High Performance Teams. Five employees from Cintra and two from Bastion attended the course for one day each month from September until February. Kevin James, director of the North Leadership Centre at Newcastle University, said "my greatest reward is when the students tell me how much the course is helping them to be more effective in their everyday work".
Prior to the start of the course Cintra and Bastion worked closely with the university in order to ensure the program was tailored to the needs of both companies. In addition Kevin James visited Cintra and Bastion prior to the launch to ensure all aspects were covered and most importantly to meet the employees attending. This personal touch was a key benefit for Carsten Staehr, CEO of Cintra and Tom Deevy, Managing Director of Bastion.
According to Suzanne Cowen, Operations Director at Cintra, one of the most important aspects was the timing of the course. "For us it was extremely important that the training did not disrupt the day to day work here at Cintra, the North Leadership Centre listened to our concerns and accommodated our needs so that the courses could be run at the beginning of each month in the quieter work period. This flexibility was extremely beneficial to us".
The feedback from all of the employees has been extremely positive. Michael Hughes, team leader at Cintra, said "this is an excellent course, which has been very well organised and is fun to take part in. It's great to find out the theory which corroborates what we do everyday, it's just nice to know that I am doing the right things and it has helped tremendously in building up my confidence". Claire Thornton, another of Cintra's team leaders, was also very positive about the course. She said "the group activities are great to take part in and hearing other people's experiences is very interesting. Sharing these work experiences makes you think about what you are doing and what you could be doing differently. I have already changed a few of my approaches to my job and management techniques since starting the course and this has worked well".
These are very positive words indeed, Suzanne Cowen and Tom Deevy have backed up these comments by confirming that all of the feedback from the employees has been extremely positive. Suzanne said "The training, as continually covered all of the aspects of middle management which we wanted our employees to explore, it has been well organised and most importantly it has been fun but also educational for our staff. I would have no hesitation in recommending this course to middle managers in businesses around the country".
Francis Barber, North Leadership Development Manager, was greatly involved in organising the course and in the collaboration between the centre, Cintra and Bastion. Francis made sure that all parties were kept in the loop and explored many of the options available to the companies to find the most suitable and valuable training. Francis wanted to deliver a course which could fundamentally help middle managers and their teams in their day to day work. Francis said "if we can prove that the training we deliver has made a positive difference to the work being produced then we know we have succeeded in producing a great leadership programme for any business".