Our annual Leaders Summit and Society Awards are only two days away and we can't wait to educate, inspire and celebrate the young leaders in our network. In the build up to this important event Till Spanke, our Impact Evaluation and Research Officer, has been looking into why teaching leadership skills is so vital.

It seems contradictory that the unemployment rates continue to be high around the world, while at the same time employers struggle to find employees with the matching skills set. This trend is even more striking among the youth. CEOs across the globe are concerned that a lack of skills among their employees might result in deteriorating growth prospects for their companies. Recent studies have shown that 43% of UK managers rated their own line manager as ineffective. What is more, nearly three quarters of organisations in England reported a deficit of management and leadership skills in 2012.

This apparent gap in leadership skills in UK businesses not only results in a productivity gap with other countries such as the US, Japan and Germany, but it also has a significant detrimental effect on the UK economy, as a 2012 BIS report states. It is alarming to read that ineffective management is estimated to be costing UK businesses over £19 billion per year in lost working hours.

These figures show that leadership training for young people is an important factor for economic growth and development. In addition, strategic leadership skills can be a unique selling point for graduates in securing a job position. Therefore, it is crucial to teach at least the basic leadership skills to young people. Even though experience can be a useful asset in managerial positions, it does not automatically make you a good leader.

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Leadership research stresses more and more the importance of emotional intelligence and self-awareness of leaders. At the same time, leaders need to drive innovation, develop competitive strategies, implement change and manage risks. Members of our network said “Enterprise allows our generation to be creative, become great leaders, contributors and problem solvers, all which are  essential skills for prosperity.”

NACUE believes that leadership training is a significant step towards creating an enterprising generation. We think that youth leadership development in enterprise societies is an integral part of the general youth development process. It is critical for young leaders to learn how to analyse their own strengths and weaknesses, as well as grow confident and motivated to reach ambitious goals. NACUE’s Big Network survey showed that the membership in an enterprise society enhanced the leadership skills of 87% of the students.

One of NACUE’s key events in the academic calendar is the annual Leaders Summit. NACUE’s Leaders Summit is a one day event that celebrates the dedication, talent and achievements of the leaders in our network. The summit unites 80 of the UK’s most promising young business minds for a day of personal development, learning and networking opportunities. Throughout the day a variety of workshops and keynote speeches will teach attendees how to improve their leadership skills and manage a group of people effectively.

Last year’s event was rated an overall 8 out of 10 by attendees and this years ceremony to be held at Legatum Institute promises not to disappoint. For more information and tickets click here. 

Pssst... we're also launching our new individual membership scheme NACUE Talent. Get it for the pre-launch price of £19 before Friday. Click here.

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