How Practicing Basic Human Skills Build Capacity

September 30, 2015  |  Future of HR, Leadership, Talent


When it comes to building capacity in an organization, effective leadership is crucial to success. The ability for those in charge to motivate, lead, and manage the ranks delivering the work cannot be understated in importance, yet according to a recent article in the Huffington Post, few managers have these skills.

Citing a recent survey (and handy graphic) in the Harvard Business Review, the article goes on to highlight the shortcomings most employees feel their bosses exhibit. For your review:


The good news, if you can call it that, is there are endless workshops, coaches, training programs and educational endeavors that have been created at a variety of prices to infuse these skills into the management team. You can bring in Leadership Development Coaches, you can send them to workshops where they learn to trust and fill notebooks with notes on how to related to their people.

In my forthcoming book Unleashing Capacity: The Hidden Human Resources, I speak about the need for HR to get out in front of their company’s day-to-day operations and build strong cases for how the company can move forward. I can think of no better starting point than this survey’s results to craft a discussion around two points: 1) do your employees feel the same way, and 2) how does this affect the capacity of your organization?

Because the answer is really quite simple: you need to train your management team to act like human beings.

Harsh, I know, but the skills above speak to plain bad manners. Not recognizing achievements mean less of them or those talents will be recognized elsewhere. Lack of clear directions means you’re essentially operating at half speed due to poor communication. Go down the line, and not knowing employee’s names seems a crucial point to creating an environment of collaboration. “Hey, you, whatever your name is,” isn’t very motivating. These are not complicated requirements that need hundreds of thousands of dollars in training. This is the management of common sense.

Use this article as a means to begin discussions on how these management mistakes might be affecting your organization. Capacity is the key to the future, and without these crucial skills your company could fold faster than you think.


Rita Trehan is the Founder and Principal of Rita Trehan, LLC, a change management and leadership advisory firm focused on corporate leadership, emerging technology, and cutting-edge organizational design. As a seasoned top executive that has successfully transformed organizations at the Fortune 200 and beyond, she has extensive experience working with CEOs and top corporate management on process and organizational improvement for maximum profitability. A soon-to-be published author, Rita regularly speaks at industry conferences around the world. You can contact Rita on twitter at @rita_trehan and connect with her via LinkedIn. Rita’s blog can be found at

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