The Management Development Questionnaire: why it has never been so important to understand management and leadership competencies

Over the past few months, managers across industries have been faced with considerable and unprecedented challenges. From adjusting to remote working – to contingency planning – to tough decision-making – the list can seem endless and often changes from one to day to the next.  

Nevertheless, for many business leaders, navigating this difficult terrain also provides the opportunity to reevaluate, grow and develop. It is incredibly important, then, that they understand their own competencies so they can maximise their strengths, address their weaknesses, and ultimately see their organisation through this challenging time.

Both management and leadership capabilities need to be considered here, because while management and leadership often work together, they each require separate skills: management is the mechanics of operating a business – administering processes and systems efficiently and delivering products and services reliably; leadership is the ‘how’ – how to successfully lead a team to achieve results and drive an organisation forward.

Now available on the Hogrefe Testsystem, the Management Development Questionnaire (MDQ-R) is a self-report personality measure that explores both management and leadership capabilities, as well as the emotional intelligence competencies that underpin effectiveness in each. Results can be combined to provide an overall profile of an individual’s strengths and areas for development but can also be helpfully broken down from the perspective of management vs. leadership:


Management competencies

  • Connecting and Motivating
  • Adapting and Delivering
  • Supporting and Developing

Leadership competencies

  • Analysing and Deciding
  • Creating and Communicating
  • Planning and Financing

Spanning both management and leadership competencies

  • Emotional Intelligence

One could argue that understanding these competencies, and being able to differentiate between them, has never been so important. As we start to think about returning to the workplace and consider the leadership and management challenges that presents, these skills will no doubt come into play. From an emotional intelligence perspective, our leaders will need to gauge morale and understand how best to motivate their teams. From a recruitment and selection perspective, it will be even more critical to make the right decisions. And thinking about the leaders themselves, they will need to be skilled in adjusting, adapting, and persevering through change. After all, our conceptualisation of the ‘workplace’ has shifted and will no doubt continue to evolve in the months ahead. 

The MDQ-R taps into the specific skills that will be required to successfully navigate these complex situations and can be applied in recruitment, selection, promotion and development across all organisational levels. Newer and aspirational leaders in particular will benefit from the new and improved report, which has been designed to provide practical guidance and facilitate development conversations. Contact us today to discuss how the MDQ-R can support the testing needs of your organisation or that of your clients.


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