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Mid-Level Managers: The Bane and Salvation of Organizations

DDI and HCI find Mid-Level Managers in a Gloom Spiral

To better understand HR’s perspective on mid-level leaders, DDI and the Human Capital Institute (HCI) launched the research Mid-Level Managers: The Bane and Salvation of Organizations.

HCI and DDI surveyed human resource leaders to understand the current set of issues creating strain within organizations regarding mid-level leaders.

Some of the results in the report include:

As the Great Recession subsides, mid-levels are badly bruised and in need of a jump-start.

  • Only 14 percent of mid-level managers are “fully engaged” which suggests that the Recession has been hard on the middle especially, and that organizations need to focus on retooling and rehabilitating this crucial group to succeed.

A Gloom Spiral—makes execution difficult and will leave many organizations behind as intense global competition resumes.

  • Considering mid-levels’ high stress and low engagement, 65 percent of HR executives believe they will be able to “muddle through” 2010 while only 39 percent can answer positively when looking ahead three-to-five years.

HR executives see a serious risk to organizational mission unless mid-level performance and engagement improves.

  • Over 75 percent of respondents are concerned or very concerned about retaining high-performing mid-levels as the Great Recession ends and the war for talent resumes.

Senior HR executives take a harsh view of their current abilities to deliver great learning and development to their mid-levels.

  • While 69 percent of HR executives want more of the overall training budget spent on mid-levels, less than 10 percent see their programs as very effective in the eyes of their mid-levels which suggests this is a problem that cannot be solved by simply throwing money at L&D.
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