The Chartered Management Institute (CMI) has urged managers to use Learning at Work Day, tomorrow (17 May), as a spur to accelerate their professional development.

Petra Wilton, Director of Policy and Research, says: “Our latest research shows that on-the-job learning is the most common form of management development, but it is not always as effective as it could be. Fifty-two per cent of managers say they have undertaken on-the-job learning in the last three years – yet fewer than half of those rate it as one of the most effective development routes.

“This is the perfect time for managers to think about how they can make more out their learning at work. One practical step is to make time during the week to reflect on new experiences. Thinking back over a key meeting can help you better understand the experience and make you better prepared for the next one. What worked well, or not so well? Why?

“Our research shows that many CEOs and senior managers wish they had access to coaching earlier in their careers. So another valuable step might be to find a coach to help you develop in a particular area, such as improving your strategic thinking.”

Employers also have an important role. Wilton adds: “Employers have to encourage a culture of learning and support it with resources such as e-learning, professional memberships, or forums to facilitate knowledge sharing, collaboration and debate. They can build coaching capability with ‘leader as coach’ programmes and accreditation. Employers can also encourage managers to participate in external networks such as professional bodies or trade associations.”