The Manunfacturing Institute logo

The Growing Importance Of Manufacturing Leadership Skills

22nd May 2018

The digital age has given rise to many big changes in the world of manufacturing. Machines can now produce higher numbers of better products in a shorter space of time, and companies can measure progress with the click of a button. Yet, for all the technological advancements shaping the standards and practices of modern manufacturing, it is the people who remain most important in this industry.

In this guide, we take a look at the role of manufacturing leadership to succeed in the UK industry, and why taking active steps to excel yourself is so important in a constantly evolving sector.

Hesitancy is holding businesses back

The importance of manufacturing leadership isn’t lost on many bosses within the industry. A lot of senior individuals are aware of how vital it is to successfully manage a team. The real problem is that very few know how to go about improving their headship skills… and are subsequently taking little action to do so.

A survey conducted by The Royal Bank of Scotland in 2012 showed that, whilst almost every business leader in manufacturing agreed to research and development were important for growth, as little as 10% said they had short-term plans to move forward with such measures. On the other side of the coin, almost three-quarters expressed concern over a lack of skills – but just 12% of this same sample had invested in appropriate educational schemes (like lean leader training) to overcome the issue.

There’s a sense of hesitancy in the manufacturing industry at present, which is holding back senior figures from becoming the kind of inspirational leaders that spearhead organisational success. Team leaders need to be made aware of what’s available to them in terms of educational courses, and then take the necessary steps to change things.

Demand for direction in an increasingly complex world

Now that machinery is more advanced than ever, and some manufacturing lines can operate without unblinking supervision, it has become all too easy for businesses to fall back on their tech and depend on software to do everything alone. This is a damaging habit.

Managing, running, handling, updating and utilising advanced tech and tools becomes very difficult very quickly when leaders lack the required skill set. Operators will turn to senior officials for assistance and troubleshooting, and if this leader is unable to provide help, production slows to a crawl and standards decrease.

As the world of manufacturing tech becomes increasingly complex, employees need direction and great leadership. Without someone guiding them, staff could lose control whilst becoming lacklustre and wasteful. By partaking in lean leadership training, manufacturing bosses can show their teams how to get the most out of machines and ensure excellent results.

The need for leaders has never been greater

The rapid rise of technology in manufacturing has helped take the sector into new, exciting territory… but it has also increased the need for leaders. Strong management is a key part of any successful operational excellence strategy– which in turn is essential to the overall success of a manufacturing business.

Studies have shown frailties and knowledge gaps amongst current manufacturing bosses, which means team leader training is more important now than it’s ever been. Technology has roared ahead – and it’s up to us to make the necessary moves to keep up.

The good news is that there are dozens of different courses that aspiring manufacturing leaders can take in order to become the kind of senior figures that instigate real, positive change. Lean six sigma accreditation and team leader training programmes are available right now through The Manufacturing Institute– but the most effective course of all is the MSc in Manufacturing Leadership.

MSc in Manufacturing Leadership: The course that creates terrific leaders 

Offered in partnership with the esteemed Lancaster University Management School, the MSc in Manufacturing Leadership programme is one of the most valuable qualifications available at The Manufacturing Institute and throughout the industry.

Designed for current or future senior managers in both small and large manufacturing businesses, the MSc in Manufacturing Leadership offers students the opportunity to hone their management skills. The course provides an in-depth understanding of how to create ideas, communicate these concepts, and then make them work – as well as the ability to identify and analyse real manufacturing problems and work out how to resolve them.

The course was designed by top manufacturers, is delivered by experts, and offers access to some of the greatest industry expertise. Students will also get the opportunity to learn about (and use) the latest tools for world-class operations.

Ideal for those striving to become effective, inspirational leaders in the workplace environment, the MSc in Manufacturing Leadership course commences on the 27th September 2018, with an apprenticeship scheme also available on the same date for half the price. The course can be completed on a part-time basis, too, meaning minimal disruption to your ordinary working week.

You can learn more about this degree from our dedicated course page, where you can also request a brochure to gain further insight into what the qualification entails.

Want to learn more about our leadership courses?

AtThe Manufacturing Institute, we specialise in creating, shaping and producing leaders with the ability to change the industry for the better. We’re committed to championing and enhancing the sector in every possible way, and that includes answering any questions you may have.

You can get in touch with our friendly and knowledgeable team by calling +44 (0) 161 875 2525 or send your message via email to You can also fill out the form on our contact page – we’d be happy to help in any way we can.


An Outlook For The UK Manufacturing Sector In 2019


Is Community The New Culture?


Meet Frank Hayden: The Manufacturing Institute’s Long-Standing Collaborator


Reality Check: The State Of UK Manufacturing


Manufacturing Champions Awards 2018


Improvements Your UK Manufacturing Business Should Be Looking At For 2019


How Your Business Can Benefit From Implementation Services


Reasons To Attend The Framework For Excellence Conference In March


Which Training Model Is Best For My Business?


How The UK Manufacturing Sector Is Changing



449, 449, shingo-logo@3x, shingo-logo@3x.png, 12710,,, Shingo logo - The Manufacturing Institute, 1, , , shingo-logo3x, inherit, 48, 2017-12-21 09:55:51, 2018-10-25 11:35:30, 0, image/png, image, png,, 281, 107, Array

The Manufacturing Institute are actively involved in the Shingo prize for excellence - an award widely considered to be the Nobel Prize of manufacturing. With our help, organisations can grow and develop to the point where they meet, and even surpass, Shingo prize criteria standards.



Fill out the form below to sign up to our newsletter!


Fill out the form below to book your course(s) via the phone!

Courses Selected: