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Nationwide has championed an approach that develops managers and gives them toolkits that ensure everyone in Nationwide has great talent conversations. Now everyone can explore their strengths, discuss how to realise their potential and drive their own career, and have a great PDP based on workplace learning. This initiative has delivered industry leading engagement scores from Nationwide’s staff.

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Line Manager to Talent Manager

"I want all line managers driving talent management" - Martin Hills, Nationwide

Tube Lines Case Study

The problem

“I was concerned that while there was training available to support managers in performance managing their staff, there was no equivalent to support them in talent management.  Most managers are not people development specialists – they are IT managers, Finance managers or Branch managers.  They need a fast way of picking up and using the best talent thinking to make the most of the talent in their teams.”


“We selected T&P to design a pioneering new product that would turn line managers into talent managers because we liked their thinking, and the quality of tools they produce. We needed a workshop plus manager’s toolkit to help our managers tackle 4 areas of talent management in their teams:
  • Spotting different types of potential – and working effectively with all of them, not just the fast trackers.
  • A strengths-based approach – where managers focus on releasing and developing people's best skills.
  • Succession planning at a local level – looking ahead rather than fire-fighting on people issues.
  • Self-driven development – getting people to be self-reliant in driving their own development.
The original workshop has now evolved into the Talent Manager elements of training. One great thing about this training is that it doesn’t over-theorise – instead people work on issues in their own team – and as such managers really engage with it.  And they have tools that they are keen to start using, back on the job.”


"We wanted to know the impact we were making, so 3 months after the first workshops, we followed up the line managers who had attended them and used the tools. We found the following increases in skills:
  • Understanding the potential in my team – increase of 57%
  • Clear about the succession planning I need to do – increase of 47%
  • Understanding the strengths in my team – increase of 50%
  • Clear on the development team members need to focus on – increase of 48%
  • Team take responsibility for their own development – increase of 41%."

My View

“I think this programme is unique. I’ve seen many career workshops for individuals, workshops suitable for HR on talent/potential/development, and workshops for senior managers who need to deal with complex structures and succession plans. This progamme is the only one I’m aware of that goes right to the heart of talent management for team managers and leaders. It provides them with just what they need; practical tools and techniques to build and sustain a highly successful and talented team.

The programme is a huge success in Nationwide – I think it plays in exactly the right space – providing some clever thinking and practical tools that managers can use during the workshop as well as immediately afterwards. It’s a programme that changes behaviour.  Managers look at their teams differently and start to manage and lead people as individuals - enabling them to get the best from every team member.”

Martin Hills, Leadership Development Manager,
Nationwide Building Society