Challenge to 'Stone Age' managers

A UNIVERSITY course has been set up in Edinburgh to tackle the UK's "cave-dweller in the boardroom" tendencies.

Research has shown that more than 90 per cent of managers avoid tough conversations or handle them badly.

According to leadership experts at Edinburgh Napier University, the reason is because of "fight or flight" responses learned in prehistoric times.

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Now a postgraduate course in management practice has been designed to help senior managers develop the interpersonal skills needed for business success.

Students will learn how to plan their communications for each situation and make them as effective as possible to positively influence the people they are managing.

Leadership consultant Heather Campbell said: "The inner caveman or woman in us is affecting leadership and management styles, resulting in poor communication and resistance to change.

"Our default mechanism means we go in ready to fight or run - before the dialogue has even started - adversely affecting the results."