Bosses have an inflated opinion of their ability to manage their staff which is undermining attempts to boost the country's economic growth, according to a new study.
Research by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) revealed a "reality gap" in the capabilities of the country's eight million managers.
A survey of 2,000 employees suggested that one of the problems in tackling the UK's skills deficit is that many managers do not know how bad they are at handling people.
Most managers believe their staff are satisfied with them, but only 58% of employees agreed.
Ben Willmott, of the CIPD, said: "Leadership and management capability continues to be an Achilles heel for UK plc, despite mounting evidence that these are skills for growth essentials.
"Our research shows almost three in 10 people have direct management responsibility for one or more people in the workplace, and yet only just over half of employees are satisfied with their manager.
"A small increase in capability across this huge population of people managers would have a significant impact on people's engagement, well-being and productivity.
"However, too many employees are promoted into people management roles because they have good technical skills, then receive inadequate training and have little idea of how their behaviour impacts on others."
Three out of five managers said they met individual employees at least once a fortnight to discuss their workload or other work-related issues, but just one in four employees agreed this was the case, said the report.
Good managers prioritised spending time with their staff, said the report.