The middle manager lifeline: trust and communication in the heart of your organisation

The middle manager lifeline: trust and communication in the heart of your organisation
Document type
Report
Author(s)
Rock, Stuart; Rock, Matthew; Ghezelayagh, Shadi
Publisher
Chartered Management Institute
Date of publication
23 September 2016
Subject(s)
Management & leadership: including strategy, public sector management, operations and production, People management: all aspects of managing people
Collection
Business and management
Material type
Reports

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This survey of 1,456 middle managers conducted by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) in 2016 explores the link between middle managers, communication and trust. It found that 85% of business leaders and managers agree trust is critical to business performance, with fast-growing organisations four-and-a-half times more likely to report a high degree of trust between middle and senior management. However, despite this apparent link with performance, only 48% of managers believe their leadership team makes communication with line managers a priority. 

The survey also finds problems with trust: 

Only one third (36%) of middle managers said they trust their senior leaders 'to a great extent' and four in five middle managers believe that staff lack full trust in their CEO. And managers believe this mistrust is clearly associated with poor business growth. 

Other key findings:

  • Just 53% of middle managers trust what their organisation tells them.
  • Only 57% say their immediate boss trusts the leadership team.
  • 41% describe the management style in their organisation as bureaucratic, 35% as authoritarian.

See an infographic summarising the findings.

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