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A new programme to develop middle managers in local government was ...
A new programme to develop middle managers in local government was

today announced by the government.

The National Middle Manager Development Programme in Local Government

aims to increase the abilities of a wide spectrum of managers at this

level in local government and help them do their jobs more

effectively. It will also help local authorities to identify and

prepare those managers with the potential to become the senior

managers of the future.

Local government minister Nick Raynsford said:

'Middle management provides a vital link between senior management

and operational functions. At its best it ensures that strategy is

turned into appropriate action and that the contribution of

operational staff is maximised.

'I am pleased to announce today's launch of the National Middle

Manager Development Programme. We want this programme to be the gold

standard for ambitious middle managers in local government, to make

an effective and sustainable contribution to on-the-ground

improvement across local government.'

The Programme, which is jointly funded by the ODPM and the LGA, is

designed to train and develop about 1000 participants over 2 years,

beginning in the Autumn. It has three key aims, which are:

- To develop existing middle managers

- To identify and prepare potential future senior managers

- To contribute to making local government a desirable career choice

and so attract new talent into the sector

The National Middle Manager Development Programme is the first

national programme to be delivered under the ODPM's Capacity Building

Programme. The Capacity Building Programme aims to enhance and

develop councils' confidence, leadership and skills to drive forward

improvement in local government, as well as develop their capacity to

learn, innovate and share knowledge and expertise about what works

and how.

The contract to run the National Middle Manager Development Programme

has been jointly awarded to the Office of Public Management and a

joint bid from Deloitte NCS Ltd and Ashridge Management Centre.

Together they have designed a single development programme with a

strong residential core, combined with regional and remote

components. They also propose setting up a website for all graduates

of the programme, so that networks built up on the programme can

continue into the future, to the benefit of local government and the

individuals themselves.


1. The Capacity Building Programme was established by the ODPM and the Local Government Association in April 2003. The three-year initiative aims to encourage

'whole council' approaches to driving improvement in local

government, focusing on developing councils' corporate capacity. This

complements the host of other initiatives, run centrally and locally,

in specific service areas.

2. The Capacity Building Programme is underpinned by four areas of

focus - leadership, corporate capacity, workforce capacity and support

for generic skills. These areas of focus provide a simple framework

that recognises some of the capacity needs that are shared across

local government.

3. The National Middle Manager Development Programme will stand

alongside and complement a number of strands of work proposed or in

place that aim at building management and leadership capacity in

local government. These include the National Graduate Development

Programme led by the Employer's Organisation (EO) and IDeA's Advanced

Leadership Programme. In addition, the ODPM and LGA are due to launch

the Local Government Leadership Centre this summer, which will

commission and include new programmes with relevance to middle


4. The Office of Public Management, Deloitte NCS Ltd and Ashridge

Management Centre, who have been selected to run the National Middle

Manager Development Programme, represent three out of fifty-one

suppliers which have been selected to provide activities under the

Capacity Building Programme. Further details of suppliers in the

'framework contract' can be found at

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