The Open University Business School (OUBS) Course Leads Managers to Career Success

April 8, 2002

The Open University Business School (OUBS) Course Leads Managers to Career Success

The Open University Business School (OUBS) is launching a professional development

course nationwide after successful pilot schemes within the NHS and call centre

industries. Leading for Results is a 12-16 week part-time, distance learning

programme which develops skills and understanding in team leadership, performance

management, and a state-of-the-art understanding of comparative leadership styles.

Its aim is to develop individuals into leaders who can create a cohesive, motivated,

well-managed and well-led workforce where all employees are striving for the

same ends.

Feedback from the pilot schemes reveals that participants feel better able to

motivate staff after taking the course, have a better understanding of the complex

processes involved in achieving objectives, develop increased confidence and

improve their communication skills.

The Leading for Results programme combines tutor-supported workshops, specially

written material, computer-based learning tools and marked assignments. The

emphasis is on getting participants to look at aspects of their own job, and

their own organisation, and relate them to the theory and concepts of the course.

The Newcastle City Health Trust, and subsequently the 3Ns Mental Health Trust,

have encouraged 60 staff (including 12 for Newcastle social services in the

first tranche) to take the Leading for Results programme to date.

David Hicks, formerly Head of Learning and Development at NCHT and now Head

of Education and Training at the 3Ns Mental Health Trust, says the programme

has been a great success: "There was a huge learning curve and people liked

the materials and the interaction at the tutorials – each reinforced the other.

Whatever position people were in, they adopted new styles of working. They feel

more comfortable at work and they are sharing their knowledge." He believes

that it should not only be managers who benefit from such programmes. "Relationship

and communication skills go well beyond management level and many people who

are not working in management can benefit from developing leadership skills.

"Developing staff in leadership across the board can lead to a more positive

culture in any organisation so it has not just been the traditional managers

who went on the course. "We had junior, middle and senior managers, administrators,

nurses and other lead clinicians, consultant psychiatrists and union officials.

There was a selection process in place but there was also self-identification

so staff interested in the course could put themselves forward."

He hopes that in the long term the knowledge and skills staff have learned

will help change the culture of the Trust, and he says those loath to invest

in staff development should think again: "There is a feeling that if you

develop staff they will leave, but if you don’t develop them they will leave

even quicker. We have to develop staff so they feel confident and positive at

work and thereby provide the best service." The insurance giant NUD has

also piloted the Leading for Results programme.

"Leading for Results is aimed at the corporate market and can be tailored

to meet the leadership development needs of a wide range of organisations,"

said Katrina Cryer, OUBS Head of Sales.

"OUBS works with clients to ensure a good fit with existing in-house portfolios,

or to develop new initiatives."

Contact Details

Potential clients enquiring about the Leading for Results programme should contact

Nicci Carr in the OUBS Corporate Development Unit on 01908 659196 or e-mail

her at

About the Open University Business School

The Open University Business School (OUBS) is Europe’s leading business school

and the major provider of management development programmes delivered by supported

distance learning. It is one of an elite group of UK and European business schools

to hold both the prestigious EQUIS quality kitemark, awarded by the European

Foundation for Management Development (efmd), and AMBA (the Association of MBAs)

accreditation for its MBA. Currently the OUBS has 30,000 students based in the

UK and more than 40 countries. Since its inception in 1983, more than 150,000

managers have studied an OUBS course at Certificate, Diploma or MBA level. The

School is based at the Open University’s Milton Keynes headquarters in Buckinghamshire.

Its website can be found at