Write an essay which displays evidence of analytical and critical skills in the area of Management Development. Choose from ONE of the following questions:
• ‘The soft skills in management are the most vital but they are also the most un-teachable. If you don’t have self- insight and can’t develop yourself, you won’t go far’. Argue analytically for or against this proposition using evidence.
• ‘Using the classroom to help develop people already practising management is a fine idea, but pretending to create managers out of people who have never managed is a sham’. Critically debate this proposition drawing on the literature on management education and, if possible, your own experience.
• With reference to the literature, critically consider the themes and trends in MD/LD and critically assess with evidence and reasoned argument how they may evolve in the future.
• Do you think leadership development and management development will continue to co-exist or will one dimension supplant the other? Debate this analytically with balanced use of evidence.
• ‘Formal and informal development need each other. Neither is complete without the other. The trick is to draw out the strengths of both for any group of learners’. Investigate this statement critically.
• ‘Leadership development is a matter for top management’. Critically evaluate this ambiguous statement.
• Leadership development is just the re-branding of management development: ‘old wine in new bottles’. Argue critically for or against this claim.
• Henry Mintzberg, the management guru, has written a major work attacking MBAs as a way of developing managers. He says that they ‘train the wrong people in the wrong ways with the wrong consequences’. Interpret and argue with evidence.
• ‘Succession management and career management are dying as the structure of work, management and organisations change’ Critically discuss.
• ‘Evaluating the effectiveness of a MD/LD programme in the real world is just too difficult. Best not to try’. Critically appraise this claim.