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CAKE PEOPLE DEVELOPMENT takes on eras ltd people development consultancy.

Welcome to our news and blog page.

 

Here will share what's new and happening in the world of CAKE People Develeopment and all things Learning and Development.

By Shelley Measures, Jul 4 2018 11:41AM

The organisations we work with which have created and sustained a coaching culture where managers use a coaching style as standard, report many benefits, from increased employee engagement and the ability to successfully resolve conflict, to increased productivity and performance.


So, it’s understandable that when polled, almost 70% of businesses said they use coaching. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that a coaching culture is in place, as frequently coaching is used on a one to one basis and often only for senior members of the team.


There are some key factors to take into consideration when implementing a coaching culture. It’s an ongoing voyage, one that requires sound building blocks of internal coaching capability so that over time, it is sustained, and capability is scaled up, so the coaching culture becomes the broader organisation culture.


1. Top Team Buy-In


For any project to work, and especially when introducing a coaching culture, the top team need to be fully engaged and on board. It needs to start at the top and then flow through the rest of the business. This is key to establishing and approving the business benefits for introducing a coaching culture. They are your advocates and will set the example of the desired behaviours.


At CAKE, we will always suggest starting with an Executive Team Coaching Programme; it proves to be the best basis for buy-in for the project.


2. Who are your champions?


The buy-in has been established and the example set, but who will champion the project? Your line managers are your champions and essential to the success and longevity of the coaching culture. It’s your champions who you will depend upon to make sure the coaching programme is put into effect, so it is vital they have the tools and skills they need to build on the coaching programme. Although not essential, we will suggest that a core team of managers achieve a formal qualification, through either the ILM or CMI.


3. Embed the programme.


A culture change is not sustainable unless there is a clear purpose. Whatever your business objectives are, they need to be communicated, so it is clear to all stakeholders what their role is and what is expected of them. The core team is the key component to create an environment that allows the culture to embed, to establish its roots.


4. Bust the myths.


It is so important to open conversations around coaching, to help your managers and executives understand how to use coaching and mentoring effectively as part of everyday working life. Be transparent, collaborate across all business units and tackles the challenges and bust the myths along the way.


It can feel like a massive task with so much to consider but by working with you, CAKE can advise, recommend and design a combination of strategies to ensure your coaching culture becomes standard practice which will ensure the maturity, success and longevity of the project.


As the saying goes.. ‘No one said it was going to be easy, but it’ll be worth it.’


For further information on our coaching and mentoring programme and interventions or for information about the East of England Coaching and Mentoring Conference – The Coaching Conversation 2018 call The CAKE Team on 01603 733006












By Shelley Measures, May 25 2018 03:04PM

The L&D landscape has changed significantly in recent years, the standard model of classroom only sessions is becoming less common and has moved to a more modern, blended approach, combining different learning techniques.


We recognise that in today’s world the modern learner likes to take responsibility for their development, preferring an experience that is flexible and open with access to a wealth of resources, when they need it. Our CAKE approach fully supports modern learning and adopts the complementary use of social learning, eLearning and other techniques combined with the standard model.


CAKEconnect is our online learning community, it allows us to create a rich, self-paced learning experience, with space for monitoring and giving feedback.


It provides an enriched learning experience and has great benefits not only for the learners but also for our programme facilitators and the learning process itself.


Since we introduced CAKEconnect, we have found our learners are more engaged. By using a variety of approaches the programme content is easy to grasp, and it enables us to use a range of other supporting material. It is an ideal space where we have created an environment that suits individual learners and different learning styles.


We do our very best to account for everyone in our face to face facilitated workshops, but by diversifying our methods, we can ensure everyone has the best opportunity to learn.


CAKEconnect supports learning in many ways:


Time restrictions of the classroom environment are no longer an issue, which deepens the connections between our learners and our facilitators, creating an extremely supportive environment for questions or concerns to be raised and addressed as well as encouraging conversations and peer to peer learning.

It gives our facilitators a feel for the learner trends and enables them to adapt and act accordingly; it’s a huge benefit to be able to add further resources in an instant from discussions with our learners both in the sessions and online.


Another awesome feature is the reporting; it is always good to be able to have at a glance a quick overview of how well our learners are doing, how far they have progressed and how they are responding to the different methods, which leads onto feedback. CAKEconnect allows our facilitators to use the right tools and blended methods to prepare feedback, and deliver it most effectively.


Overall, it helps the learning become much more meaningful, it engages and encourages learners to take greater responsibility for their learning, and it makes it fun.


Call the CAKE Team today to discover how our CAKEconnect community can support your development solutions 01603 733006.



By Shelley Measures, May 14 2018 01:44PM


We had a terrific couple of days at the CIPD L&D show at Olympia last month. It was great to have such stimulating conversations and hear inspirational stories about the amazing work our colleagues are doing in the L&D community. The energy and passion were palpable. It’s an ideal environment to keep up to date with learning trends, and we learnt a great deal.


One of the main topics of the show this year was apprenticeships. During the conference, IBM and BT both shared how the apprenticeship levy was supporting not only their technical apprenticeships but their managers and leaders too.


Apprenticeships have long been viewed as opportunities for school leavers to gain skills and experience in a trade, but it is no longer the case. The introduction of the Levy in April last year means that businesses can now look to invest and upskill their existing workforce.


I think we are all familiar with the term ‘accidental manager’, it’s been around for a while, where the best ‘technician’ is promoted to a management role that they have no experience in nor have been trained to do. With the new standards for Leadership & Management Apprenticeships, organisations can look at the wider skill set and offer an incredibly robust, long-term, sustainable development programme, giving managers the best chance of being effective and productive in their roles.


We know that some organisations face the challenge of the negative connotations and perceptions of the word apprenticeship. They also fear the weight of the administration around it but, by working with CAKE, it’s seamless from start to finish. We oversee the whole process, support the internal communication, the delivery, administration and funding.


We are hosting another Apprenticeship Event in London this month on May 30th, to explain our unique approach. Follow the link for details and to book your place.


https://cake-people-development.eventbrite.co.uk


Another strong theme running through our conversations last week was coaching and mentoring, and how organisations are beginning to realise the significance of a coaching culture to support development solutions, organisational change, apprenticeships and overall employee engagement.


Managers and leaders who operate in a coaching culture support learning and give regular feedback, which offers opportunities for growth, and creates a more engaged and energised workforce.


We are passionate about coaching and mentoring; it underpins all that we do. We work tirelessly to support organisations to develop a climate where they can flourish through supporting learning and nurturing talent to deliver business outcomes


Many of our conversations were around how we can support organisations in the training and development of their internal coaches who then, in turn, will develop other coaches to sustain a meaningful coaching practice for the business.


Our experience shows us that when done well, coaching automatically engages people where other strategies have fallen flat and by the wayside. It delivers profit and value to everyone. Profit without the value recognised by the workforce kills engagement in a heartbeat.


To discover how Coaching and Mentoring can support your organisation, call the CAKE Team on 01603 733006 or email slice@cakepd.co.uk




By Shelley Measures, Apr 5 2018 01:36PM

Apprenticeship Levy
Apprenticeship Levy

CAKE People Development Apprenticeship Event - Setting New Standards


The introduction of Leadership and Management Apprenticeships is the best business opportunity available for you to develop the capabilities and performance of your managers and leaders.


The new standards unlock exciting opportunities for organisations to attract talent, nurture and develop existing team members to enable them to reach their full potential and achieve a professional qualification.


We can help you to develop them using the funding available through the Apprenticeship Levy, but where do you start?


Join us on May 30th from 9.30am to 12.30am, for refreshments, breakfast and of course CAKE to explore how your organisation can make the most of your Apprenticeship Levy.


We will demystify the processes and funding of apprenticeships, and share our innovative and unique approach, putting learning to work in the context of your organisation; it’s how we make the difference.


Our event is free to attend and open to everyone.


Wed 30 May 2018 - 09:30 – 12:30 BST

77 Kingsway London WC2 6SR



https://cake-people-development.eventbrite.co.uk


By Shelley Measures, Feb 13 2018 03:04PM

Coaching Leaders


Working with leaders in business, whether senior leaders of organisations or talented contributors within them, can be highly stimulating and rewarding. They are often bright, passionate and inspiring people with impressive track records of success. For the same reasons, coaching these leaders can be scary. It’s easy to feel intimidated by power and talent. This article covers three areas in which gaining the respect of your leader coachees can lead to their stronger commitment to working with you. The three areas are credibility, confidence and challenge.


Credibility


Leaders want to know that you’re a person worth their time and effort before they commit to the process. Success has come to them from using their time wisely, and you’re just one of many choices they could make to fill their day. Accept that they will start judging you as soon as you meet (or speak on the phone or exchange emails). Every interaction is a moment of truth for them about you. Establishing your credibility is essential for them to trust you and we know that trust is vital for coaching to be effective.


As well as your professional credibility as a coach, learning as much as you can about your leader before you meet them shows them you take your coaching clients seriously. This sounds obvious, but I’m still surprised at the number of coaches who pay scant attention to this step. “I don’t do any preparation as I don’t want to pre-judge the person,” a coach once told me. I know of at least one contract she lost because the managing director she met thought her unworthy of working with. She knew little about his company and even less about him. One or two conversations and a search online might have produced a different outcome. Study the organisation’s website to understand their business niche, approach and successes. Many display profiles of their leaders. Some even give contact details. Recently I was researching a financial software company. The CEO’s email address was on the website, so I sent him a brief hello. This led to a friendly phone conversation. No immediate business resulted, but our relationship is now established. One thing he did say was how few approaches he gets directly in this way. The fact I’d bothered to look and contact him, as a result, was unusual and welcome (why would he have his email in a public domain if he didn’t want people to reach out?).


Speaking to people who know and work with your leader is also very useful. I find a simple, open and honest approach works best, something like, “X and I are meeting soon to see if there’s value in working together. What could you tell me that might be helpful?” Sometimes I’ll ask a more specific question such as, “What strengths do they bring to the business?” or “What are some of the qualities you admire in them?” Don’t ask about failings or shortcomings. You can guarantee this conversation will get back to your leader at lightning speed. You don’t want your motives to be questioned. Keep it positive and respectful.


Confidence


You need to convince your leader that you believe in the value of what you’re doing. If there’s any doubt, you can forget continuing to work with them. Remove the risk of coming across as hesitant or tentative by having a clear coaching pathway to travel along. Point out the reason for and the value of each step, and include a couple of real-life vignettes to illustrate. When I met the no-nonsense MD of a business consultancy, “Convince me this will work,” was one of the first things he said. I showed him a simple one-pager entitled, ‘Your Exit Strategy In Four Steps’. On the page were four key questions for him to wrestle with. All of his answers related to his achieving retirement as soon as possible. My research had revealed this as his key goal. I explained each step simply and clearly, and emphasised the thinking effort and committed action he would need to bring to make our coaching relationship worthwhile. “OK,” was all he said and we started right away. He retired within five years of the conversation.


Challenge


Giving your leaders an easy ride is not helpful to their development. They welcome and rise to challenge, and they will want it from you. I adopt an assertive coaching approach with business leaders. As long as that does not stray into rudeness or insult, often they find somebody standing up to them refreshing. Pick your battles, however. Nit-picking is just annoying. Put your foot down on the big stuff, the thinking, assumptions, opinions and judgements that could sabotage your leader’s progress. During one of my last coaching sessions before writing this piece, I interrupted my coachee. “You are blaming someone else for what is your responsibility,” I stated. He was taken aback and a bit annoyed by this. I explained that three times he had told me of the importance of a key deliverable’s success, each time adding that he had little faith in one of his manager’s ability to play their part. The message I got was, “I’m just waiting for things to fail so I can justify my opinion of the guy.” When I said that to him, he became silent, looked at the floor and then reluctantly agreed. It was a breakthrough which allowed us to move towards how he could support that manager more strongly.


Coaching leaders is a great test of your own leadership in action. People like people who are like themselves. When your leader coachees experience qualities in you they can relate to, admire or to which they want to aspire; they will have a natural tendency to connect with you. How you coach them, therefore, is arguably just as important as what you coach them on. By building your credibility, displaying confidence in your coaching and not holding back with a helpful challenge, your leader will be even more minded to take you seriously as a valuable asset on their leadership journey.


Contact The CAKE Team on 01603 733006 or via email on slice@cakepd.co.uk to discuss our coaching interventions.




By Shelley Measures, Aug 22 2017 11:00AM

The Apprenticeship Levy doesn't feel new to me. When I started my L&D career in 1984 (it was called Training then) I had to produce an annual report to demonstrate we were entitled to levy exemption from The Distributive Industry Training Board (DITB). The report focused more on quantity of training days etc rather than outcomes or business impact but it always made us reflect on what we had achieved and meant that we had plenty of support for investing in training.


The similarity that particularly strikes me is the opportunity to create truly blended and comprehensive programmes for people at all stages of their career. I started with the employer I described above as a management trainee - I was on a two-year programme with a blend of learning opportunities planned in. It really was our flagship programme and when I became Training Officer I was responsible for running it. Remember we are talking early 80s and I still benefit from that programme now. Here are just some of the elements that made it such a solid foundation for the rest of my working life:


• 3 month assignments in different departments across the business

• Day release college courses - Year 1 technical, Year 2 - management focused

• In-house 1 and 2 day courses - often run by senior managers and specialists in the business on a wide range of business and management topics

• Involvement in special events - i.e. Ideal Home Show, Lining up and presenting a crystal bowl to Her Majesty The Queen, etc.

• Entry in to related awards (e.g. Chamber of Commerce Trainee of the Year)

• Project work

• Regular documented reviews after each assignment (3 months)

• Learning Diary to record progress, reflect on learning during assignments and guide us through the programme

• Regular access to Senior Management and real involvement from them throughout

• Final Graduation ceremony (I still have my photo!)

• Almost guaranteed promotion at the end but with plenty of support to make the right choice over the first management role.


The selection process was tough, over 100 applications were received each year without any advertising and this was whittled down to around 8 each year through interviews and assessment centres using a panel of trained senior managers - when I experienced this from the 'other side' I saw how robust the discussions were in the wash up.


So, now we have digital but other than that, I'm not sure how much of what we are doing today is really new. I believe that if we use the Apprenticeship levy wisely, we will go back to developing people properly. Bite-sized, e-learning, social Learning all have their place but as a product of an in-depth, tailored and well supported two-year programme I value the chance to provide others with that type of experience and learning. All of my fellow trainees went on to have impactful roles quite quickly and of those I have tracked - many reached Director levels in their various organisations. Perhaps that's the key, let's train people in management and leadership skills before they are promoted!




By Shelley Measures, Jul 12 2017 08:38AM

CAKE People Development opened its doors to clients and friends last Friday afternoon to mark the official opening of their new offices. They were invited for delicious afternoon tea, fizz and of course CAKE!


Margaret Burnside, Director, said “We’d like to thank everyone who came along to celebrate with us. After all the challenging work of the office refurbishment and the move itself, it was wonderful to have the opportunity to finally show off our new home.”


CAKE moved from its offices in Denmark Street to a new base at Diss Business Park in Hopper Way, following a successful period of growth since its launch in October 2016.


CAKE People Development are specialists in Leadership and Management Development, Coaching and Mentoring, and Organisational Development. They are approved and accredited by both the ILM (Institute of Leadership and Management) and CMI (Chartered Management Institute) to deliver qualifications to Level 7 in Leadership and Management and Coaching and Mentoring.


The new facilities have enabled the company to take on extra staff, while also allowing room for further growth.


Margaret added, “We were always committed to staying in Diss when we were looking for our new office space and the ongoing investment into regenerating the Diss Heritage Triangle mean it’s an exciting time for the town and we are proud to be a part of it. Our office looks great, it represents our values and culture, but more importantly it has provided us with the space and location needed for us to continue to support our clients in developing their people and really making a difference, not just for their staff but for the organisations themselves.”


For any enquiries regarding our new offices, training facilities or our services, please contact the CAKE Team on 01603 733006 or email Slice@cakepd.co.uk or visit the website www.cakepd.co.uk



By Shelley Measures, Jul 4 2017 01:46PM

The TJ Awards are back and they are bigger than ever for 2017.


Widely recognised as the best awards in the sector, the TJ Awards recognise the ingenuity, creativity, passion and hard work of learning and development professionals from around the world.


This year the TJ Awards 2017 ceremony will take place at the Brewery on Tuesday 5th December.


Margaret Burnside has been on the judging panel for the last four years and this year CAKE are proud and delighted to be sponsoring the 'Best Leadership Development Programme' category.


Debbie Carter, TJ’s editor in chief says: “We're looking for the brightest learning and development teams and people to tell us why they deserve to be recognised.


The Awards categories allow a broad range of companies and individuals to participate and reflect the increasing diversity and scope in the L&D landscape”


For further information visit, http://www.trainingjournalawards.com/


By Shelley Measures, Jun 22 2017 11:16AM

Are you or a member of your team looking to development your leadership & management skills?


We have just announced the dates for our Autumn Open Programmes. Our accredited programmes have been designed to support your executives, managers, supervisors and team leaders through every stage of their career and professional development.


Our programmes are offered to award, certificate and diploma up to Level 7 and are accredited by the two-best known membership and accreditation bodies, The ILM and the CMI. CAKE is an approved centre with direct claim status from both bodies and as such, the quality of our programmes is guaranteed.


Our approach to people development is a practical one – with a strong emphasis on inspiration, implementation and application. Each programme has been designed to meet the needs of the executives, managers and leaders attending them.


We take a long-term view on working with you to build truly collaborative, trusted relationships founded on shared values, passion, and excellence. We believe in making a real difference to both individuals and organisations.


Whether you only have one or two people with a particular development need, or you have an individual that would really benefit from the variety of perspectives gained from learning with their peers from a wide range of different organisations; our open programmes are an ideal way for your managers and leaders to develop a wide array of skill and knowledge.


Our open programmes are also available in-house. If you are interested in running one of these programmes in-house, please let us know – we have a passionate team ready to help.


For further information on our Open Programmes, click here. or talk to Jo Tonnison, our Programme Manager on 01603 733006 for help in identifying the right path for you or a member of your team.



By Shelley Measures, May 30 2017 08:36AM

The apprenticeship levy?


On the 6th April 2017, the Government introduced the apprenticeship levy, with a view to creating millions of apprenticeships across the UK. The apprenticeship levy will be applied to all employers with an annual wage bill greater than £3 million however there will be a 0.5% tax on the total pay bill, which will be paid through Pay As You Earn.

The purpose of the levy is to encourage employers to invest in apprenticeship programmes and to raise additional funds to improve the quality and quantity of apprenticeships.



What size of business will be subject to the levy?


The levy threshold is calculated by size of payroll. Businesses with a wage bill of more than £3 million will be required to pay a levy. This payroll threshold only applies to 2% of employers, which means only larger SMEs fall into this bracket.


How much is the levy?


The levy amount is 0.5% of a company’s payroll, and every employer gets an allowance of £15,000 to offset against the amount they owe.

That’s why it only applies to businesses with a payroll over £3m. So to explain:

A business with a payroll of £3m:

£3,000,000 (payroll) x 0.5% (levy amount) = £15,000 (amount owing pre allowance) – £15,000 (levy allowance) = £0 (levy payable)

A business with a payroll of £6m:

£6,000,000 (payroll) x 0.5% (levy amount) = £30,000 (amount owing pre allowance) – £15,000 (levy allowance) = £15,000 (levy payable)


When will it be payable?


Businesses will be subject to the levy payment from April 2017 and it will be payable monthly.

For levy-paying employers (annual wage bill greater than £3 million)

In addition to the functions available to all employers, from May 2017 levy-paying employers will be able to access funding for apprenticeships through their digital account and:

• negotiate and pay for apprenticeship training and assessment

• manage their funding and apprentices, view their account balance and plan their spending

• stop or pause payments (for example, if their apprentice stops their training, takes a break from training or the employer hasn’t received the service agreed with the provider).

To access their funding, levy-paying employers will need to set up an account on the digital apprenticeship service from January 2017 using their Government Gateway ID, PAYE scheme details and Companies House number or equivalent, which company payroll teams should have.


For non-levy paying employers (annual wage bill less than £3 million)


By 2020, all employers will be able to use the digital apprenticeship service to pay for training and assessment for apprenticeships.

Until then, non-levy paying employers will continue to negotiate and agree their apprenticeship programme with their chosen training provider.

90% of non-levy paying employers’ apprenticeship training and assessment costs in England will be paid for by the government.

The government will ask these employers to make a 10% contribution to the cost, paid directly to the provider, and the government covers the rest. This cost will be spread over the lifetime of the apprenticeship.

The government is offering additional support to organisations with fewer than 50 employees by paying 100% of training and assessment costs for their apprentices aged 16 to 18 and for those aged 19 to 24 formerly in care or with a local authority education, health and care plan.


Are all UK employers going to benefit?


Employers that do not pay the levy will still be able to access government support for apprenticeships.

Employers in England that pay the levy will be able to access the funds they have paid in via a new online portal called the Digital Apprenticeship Service (DAS). They will also receive a 10% top-up from the Government to their total monthly contributions in England.

All employers in England have access to a new, easy-to-use digital apprenticeship service to help digital apprenticeship service to help them manage their apprenticeship programme.




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