• Management Consultancy and Training with a difference
  • Management Consultancy and Training with a difference

Management Development

Management development - demonstrating Return on Investment


I am often asked how do you demonstrate Return on Investment? (ROI) on the management development programmes we design and deliver. Coming from a corporate background with a focus on revenue, costs and profits, I fully understand the nature of the question and appreciate from a learning and development perspective how challenging demonstrating ROI can be.

Research from the Chartered Management Institute showed that in 2004 the average spend per employee on management development was £1035 and on average 6.3 days were allocated per employee to management development. So the effects of the directs costs on the bottom line plus the time away from the workplace start to add up to a significant  amount, no wonder people are asking about ROI!

So what is the solution? How can you demonstrate ROI? There are a number of options but an approach of measuring the individual manager or leader before development and then again at a suitable point after the development is a good start. This helps demonstrate the impact of the development, for example behavioural change.

A helpful vehicle to do this is to utilise 360 degree feedback. A candidate undertaking management development, selects around 4-6 people (their boss + colleagues+ direct reports) to assess their performance against agreed dimensions, usually some relevant competencies. As well as objective scoring there are opportunities to gather information via qualitative comments and feedback. This approach can highlight strengths that can be utilised during the development and also highlight ‘Blind Spot’ behaviours and skill gaps that could be focused on during the development.

Another aspect of this is that if you undertake 360 degree feedback before the development process begins there is often time to tailor and shape the development solution so that both the individual and organisation gain from it. Again this could reduce costs and impact on the bottom line.

One of the tools we would recommend for this is the Profiles Checkpoint Management Development System. As well as an easy to set up and use 360 degree feedback system, Checkpoint analyses the results and feedback obtained and provides a tailor made on line e-learning and action planning self study exercise, this can then be integrated into the overall development programme. A key part of this development programme is sitting down with someone and discussing and interpreting the feedback results.

OK, so you have carried out 360 degree feedback, you have completed a personalised action planning exercise and undertaken a relevant development programme, what’s next? How do we demonstrate ROI?

One solution here is to carry out another 360 degree feedback analysis, using the same 4-6 people for the assessment and then compares 2nd round scoring and comments with previous scoring and comments. What you should see is improvements in key areas in both objective scoring and qualitative comments. This will then help demonstrate ROI; the person has improved in key areas that others have identified as being development opportunities as a result of the development.

A helpful option at this stage is to analyse the range of results that emerge from undertaking a number of 360 degree feedback assessments and consider what that might mean for the organisation in terms of direction for management and leadership development. Are there common issues or opportunities regarding management development, the organisation should be aware of? The Profiles Checkpoint Management Development System has a facility to do this and produce a report based on the analysis.



If you would like some further information on demonstrating ROI for management development I would be delighted to hear from you This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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