Short course takes the long view

The UCT Graduate School of Business has updated its flagship leadership programme for new managers to be more relevant and fit for the future.

To keep up with a changing world - and workplace - the UCT Graduate School of Business (UCT GSB) has re-purposed its flagship leadership programme for first-line managers to give them the skills they need to be successful in new contexts.

The New Manager now includes business communication, an emerging market focus, strategy and innovation, and an awareness of the importance of creating shared value. It is now a credit-bearing short course run by UCT at NQF level 6 at 15 credits.

Jenny Carter, director of the programme, says that the shift is in response to feedback from delegates as well as HR managers. "We have noticed a clear shift in demands being placed on new managers," she says. "As organisations flatten and move away from hierarchical structures, so we hear from our students that they are being required to take bigger and more responsible decisions much sooner in their careers and for this they need an expanded skill set."

Carter added that as the demands on new managers grow, short courses are proving to be a cost effective and targeted means to develop the critical skills needed. This is in line with government's increased emphasis on credit-bearing short courses as a way to achieve this.

According to Adeline Singh, Skills Planning and Skills Development manager at INSETA, new regulations passed at the end of last year have changed how funds will be allocated for workplace skills development with the introduction of a pivotal grant that is targeted at developing workplace skills in ways that eventually lead to full qualifications, rather than non-credit bearing short courses.

The New Manager includes rigorous assessments and 150 notional hours of contact time, presentations, assignment work and preparation. Delegates who complete the short course and submit an assignment that is assessed to be competent will receive a UCT certificate of completion in continuing professional development.

New research shows formal development is becoming more important than ever for talent retention.

A recent Harvard Business Review study showed that offering professional development to high-potential managers keeps them from leaving for other companies. In their article, Why top young managers are in non-stop job hunt, Monika Hamouri, Jie Cao and BurakKoyuncu conclude that three-quarters of high potential employees are constantly on the look-out for opportunities elsewhere. And a survey of 1200 employees showed that the main grudge is not receiving enough formal training and development. Although on-the-job training is important to these high-calibre employees, informal employee development efforts are highly unsatisfactory to them, and they prefer efforts that help strengthen the foundations for their future careers.

Carter says that a credit-bearing short course, such as the New Manager, satisfies both the employee and the employer at the same time.

"It allows the employee to be able to develop their skills formally, while following their employer's workplace skills development plan to develop high-potential talent for the ever-changing business environment," she says.

The New Manager runs at the UCT GSB from May 5 to 17 and from September 29 to October 11, 2013. For more information contact Tracy Kimberly on 021 406 1346 or visit

28 Feb 2013 13:17


Nokuthula Sithole
I like this.Nokuthula Sithole
Posted on 28 Feb 2013 17:17