On the Job Management Development Methods

The development of a manager's abilities can take place on the job. The four techniques for on the job development are:


In coaching the trainee is placed under a senior manager who acts as an guide or coach and teaches job knowledge and skill to the trainee. He instructs him what he wants him to do, how it can be done etc., and helps him to correct errors and perform effectively. It is just as track coaches who observe, analyse and attempt to improve the performance of their athletes. This technique of development is quite rewarding. As the managers learn by doing. It also creates the opportunities for high level interaction and rapid feedback on performance. But this has a limitation also as we cannot expect that alt excellent managers will be effective coaches.

Thus, the effectiveness of this technique relies on the ability of the concerned 'coach'. According to a survey conducted by International Coach Federation (ICF), more than 4,000 companies are using coach for their executives. These coaches are experts most of the time outside consultants. A coach is the best training plan for the CEO’s because

  1. It is one-to-one interaction

  2. It can be done at the convenience of CEO

  3. It can be done on phone, meetings, through e-mails, chat

  4. It provides an opportunity to receive feedback from an expert

  5. It helps in identifying weaknesses and focus on the area that needs improvement This method best suits for the people at the top because if we see on emotional front, when a person reaches the top, he gets lonely and it becomes difficult to find someone to talk to. It helps in finding out the executive’s specific developmental needs. The needs can be identified through 360 degree performance review.


Job-Rotation: It refers to the transfer or movement of executive from one job to another and from one plan to another on some planned basis for educational learning purposes. Such rotation may continue for a period ranging from 6 months to 24 months. Under this method, the trainees are rotated over various routine jobs in a department, division or unit before they are due for promotion as managers. The idea behind this is to give them the required diversified skills and a broader outlook, which are very important at the upper management levels. It also increases the inter-departmental cooperation and helps in reducing the monotony of the work.

This also helps in turning the specialist into generalists. Under this job rotation can be either horizontally or vertically. Vertical rotation is nothing more than promoting a worker into a new position. Horizontal job transfer can be made on a planned basis or on a situational basis.

The main advantage of job rotation is that it permits a greater understanding of other activities within the company. People are prepared more rapidly to accept greater responsibility, especially at upper levels. Further ability and talent of each manager are best tested, so the enterprise can secure his best utilization in the emergency period. But this is not free of drawbacks. Due to this developmental costs increase. It upsets the routine system of the concern itself. An extensive rotation programme can result in having a vast number of employees shifted in a position where their job knowledge is very limited. And even though there may be significant long-term benefits from the programme.

Benefits of Job Rotation

Some of the major benefits of job rotation are:

  1. It provides the employees with opportunities to broaden the horizon of knowledge, skills, and abilities by working in different departments, business units, functions, and countries

  2. Identification of Knowledge, skills, and attitudes (KSAs) required

  3. It determines the areas where improvement is required

  4. Assessment of the employees who have the potential and caliber for filling the position


Mentoring is an ongoing relationship that is developed between a senior and junior employee. Mentoring provides guidance and clear understanding of how the organization goes to achieve its vision and mission to the junior employee.

The meetings are not as structured and regular than in coaching. Executive mentoring is generally done by someone inside the company. The executive can learn a lot from mentoring. By dealing with diverse mentee’s, the executive is given the chance to grow professionally by developing management skills and learning how to work with people with diverse background, culture, and language and personality types.

Executives also have mentors. In cases where the executive is new to the organization, a senior executive could be assigned as a mentor to assist the new executive settled into his role. Mentoring is one of the important methods for preparing them to be future executives.

This method allows the mentor to determine what is required to improve mentee’s performance. Once the mentor identifies the problem, weakness, and the area that needs to be worked upon, the mentor can advise relevant training. The mentor can also provide opportunities to work on special processes and projects that require use of proficiency. Some key points on Mentoring

  • Mentoring focus on attitude development.

  • Conducted for management-level employees.

  • Mentoring is done by someone inside the company.

  • It is one-to-one interaction.

  • It helps in identifying weaknesses and focus on the area that needs improvement.


Job Instruction Technique (JIT) uses a strategy with focus on knowledge (factual and procedural), skills and attitudes development.

Procedure of Job Instruction Technique (JIT)

JIT consists of four steps:

  • Plan – This step includes a written breakdown of the work to be done because the trainer and the trainee must understand that documentation is must and important for the familiarity of work. A trainer who is aware of the work well is likely to do many things and in the process might miss few things. Therefore, a structured analysis and proper documentation ensures that all the points are covered in the training program. The second step is to find out what the trainee knows and what training should focus on.

  • Then, the next step is to create a comfortable atmosphere for the trainees’ i.e. proper orientation program, availing the resources, familiarizing trainee with the training program, etc.

  • Present – In this step, trainer provides the synopsis of the job while presenting the participants the different aspects of the work. When the trainer finished, the trainee demonstrates how to do the job and why is that done in that specific manner. Trainee actually demonstrates the procedure while emphasizing the key points and safety instructions.

  • Trial – This step actually a kind of rehearsal step, in which trainee tries to perform the work and the trainer is able to provide instant feedback. In this step, the focus is on improving the method of instruction because a trainer considers that any error if occurring may be a function of training not the trainee. This step allows the trainee to see the after effects of using an incorrect method. The trainer then helps the trainee by questioning and guiding to identify the correct procedure.

  • Follow-up – In this step, the trainer checks the trainee’s job frequently after the training program is over to prevent bad work habits from developing.