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January 23, 2024

Doing more with less

Mind Tools for Business

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In this blog we examine how high-impact management development programs can also be budget friendly.

Managers have a tough job and need support to learn, grow and lead effectively. But traditional management development programs are expensive, time consuming and just not that convenient. You have to book onto courses, wait for them to become available and take time out to attend.

At London Borough of Camden, these pressures are combined with tight budgets and a management population that covers everything from libraries and schools, to waste management and social care.

To drive performance in this context, Learning and Development Lead Jackie Kennedy developed a game-changing management development program that shunned traditional teaching methods. Instead, she and her team encouraged more self-directed and interactive learning that only required a light-touch from the L&D team and yet still aligned with the Council’s specific business needs.

Using Mind Tools as a strategic resource in blended learning programs

Camden Council’s management development program journey is meticulously planned. It guides participants to discover areas for improvement, share ideas and reflect on progress. This process is vital for personal growth, self-awareness and improved performance.

Managers are introduced to key management skills, such as team dynamics, stakeholder mapping and effective communication, through Mind Tools’ focussed Content Library. These resources aren’t just informational; they spark curiosity and self-directed learning.

Cohorts of managers meet periodically to delve into the topics. Between sessions, they engage with Mind Tools’ resources in ways that suit their learning preferences. Whether it's listening to a podcast, exploring online materials, or engaging in peer discussions, Mind Tools provides a rich tapestry of content that can be leveraged by managers, no matter their context.

Another innovative element is the introduction of learning buddies. This peer-to-peer learning strategy creates a dynamic environment where managers co-coach each other. As they apply new techniques, share insights, and reflect on their learning journeys, they enhance their overall learning experience.

Learning that fosters connection and better performance

The outcomes have been nothing short of remarkable. Managers report feeling more connected, empowered, and better equipped in their roles. The program has also successfully embedded a culture of continuous learning across the organization. Once managers have personally experienced the benefits of Mind Tools, they are more inclined to encourage their teams to engage with the resources.

By leveraging the rich management and leadership resources available in Mind Tools, Jackie and her team had no need to create any learning content from scratch. The management development program they designed is nurturing effective managers and a pervasive culture of curiosity and growth. It also clearly demonstrates how learning can be both impactful and budget friendly.

Read the full case study

Discover how Camden Council’s strategic use of the Mind Tools Content Library has generated amazing feedback - from very different audiences. Read the case study here.

Listen to the podcast

Listen to the full episode of our interview with Jackie where we discuss the unique challenges faced by local government, how to develop a management development programme without providing any ‘teaching’ and the role of digital in Camden’s L&D strategy.

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Gain essential management and leadership skills

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Join Mind Tools

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