Viki Holton

BA, BPS

Viki is a Research Fellow at Ashridge. Her interests include surveying current trends in management and management development, best practice in career development, HR, equal opportunities and the development of women managers.

She has undertaken work with employee attitude surveys, evaluation and benchmarking of human resource initiatives such as diversity and development.

Viki is an editorial board member of Career Development International and Gender in Management and for a number of years she was a board member of the European Women’s Management Development network and edited the newsletter. She has refereed articles for journals such as Corporate Governance and the International Review of Women and Leadership. Prior to joining Ashridge in 1978 Viki’s background was mainly in the finance sector, including some years with National Westminster Bank. She is qualified to Level A & B Certificates in Occupational Psychometric Testing.

Viki Holton

Publications

How to Thrive and Survive as a Working Woman: The Coach-Yourself Toolkit

Dent, F.E., & Holton, V. (2016). How to Thrive and Survive as a Working Woman: The Coach-Yourself Toolkit

How to Coach Your Team: Release Team Potential and Hit Peak Performance

Jones, P. Holton, V., & Jowitt, A. (2016) How to Coach Your Team: Release Team Potential and Hit Peak Performance

Change: Opportunity or threat?

Dent, F., & Holton, V. (2015) Change: Opportunity or threat? EFMD Global Focus.

Women managers, careers and organizations

Holton, V. (2015). Women managers, careers and organizations. In A. M. Broadbridge & S. L. Fieldan (Eds.), Handbook of Gendered Careers in Mangement: Getting In, Getting On, Getting Out (pp. 243-257). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.  

Women and Leadership around the World

Holton, V. (2015). Women Leaders in the United Kingdom, their careers and the organizational culture. In M. S. R, F. Wambura Ngunjiri, K. A. Longman, & C. Cherrey (Eds.), Women and Leadership Around the World. Information Age Publishing

Social Mobility: Experience, Expertise and Innovation in UK Business

Roberts, S. & Holton V. (2015) Social Mobility: Experience, Expertise and Innovation in UK Business

Searching for the Holy Grail: Four principles of effective management development

This research investigates the critical issue of ensuring that customised management development is effective, delivering the results that businesses really need. It explores key issues curriculum design and delivery, offering insights into the factors which contribute to the impact of executive education. 

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Hind, P., & Holton, V. (2015) Searching for the Holy Grail: Four principles of effective management development. Ashridge Research Report

Social Mobility: Experience, Expertise and Innovation in UK Business

Holton, V. (2015) Social Mobility: Experience, Expertise and Innovation in UK Business. Paper presentated at the Academy of Business in Sociaty 14th Annual Colloquium. Milan, Italy.

Effective Executive Education: The Key Components and Challenges

Hind, P. & Holton, V. (2015) Effective Executive Education: The Key Components and Challenges. Paper presented at the Dubai International Conference for Advanced Research in Business. Dubai, UAE

Creating HR Influence: CEO Viewpoints

Holton, V. (2015) Creating HR Influence: CEO Viewpoints. HR Magazine - HR Most Influential Supplement. November

Leadership and Management Insights: Extending findings from a series of online surveys.

Schofield, C. and Holton, V. (2014) 'Leadership and Management Insights: Extending findings from a series of online surveys.' Paper presented at the British Academy of Management (BAM) Conference. 9-11 September, Belfast

How to tackle that difficult conversation

Holton, V., Stilliard, B. (2013). How to tackle that difficult conversation. Public Finance

Women as Global Leaders

Holton, V. & Dent, F. (2012) Women as Global Leaders: Creating a Sustainable Future for the World, Zayed University, Abu Dhabi, 13 - 15 March

Why women miss out on top jobs

Dent, F. & Holton, V. (2012) Why women miss out on top jobs, Edge Magazine, online magazine, May

Why women miss out on top jobs and How to win at work

Dent, F. & Holton, V. (2012) Why women miss out on top jobs and How to win at work, The CA, online magazine, May

How Women Can Navigate to become Global Leaders

Dent, F. & Holton, V. (2012) How Women Can Navigate to become Global Leaders, EFMD Global Focus, Vol. 6. No. 2, pp. 36 - 39

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Dismantling the Glass Ceiling

Dent, F. & Holton, V. (2012) Dismantling the Glass Ceiling, Human Resources, April

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Women in Business: Navigating Career Success

Women in Business: Navigating Career Success" By Viki Holton & Fiona Elsa Dent 2012. Palgrave MacMillan

Holton, V. & Dent, F. (2012) Women in Business: Navigating Career Success, Palgrave MacMillan

Understanding Women's Careers

Dent, F., Holton, V. & Rabbetts, J. (2011) Understanding Women's Careers, Ashridge Report, December

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The Manager, the Training and the learning Transfer

Holton, V. & Voller, S. (2010) The Manager, the Training and the learning Transfer - Looking at ways to improve Learning Transfer, Developing Leadership Capacity Conference, Bristol, July

The Manager, the Training and the Learning Transfer

Holton, V. & Voller, S. (2010) The Manager, the Training and the Learning Transfer - Looking at Ways to improve Learning, International Academy of Management and Business Conference, Madrid, June

Improving learning transfer

Holton, V., Voller, S., Paine Schofield, C.B. & Devine, M. (2010) Improving learning transfer: A pilot study with three Ashridge client organisations, Ashridge Report, May

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Motivation and employee engagement in the 21st century

Dent, F., Holton, V. & Rabbetts, J. (2010) Motivation and employee engagement in the 21st century, EFMD Global Focus, Vol. 4, Issue 2, p. 31

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The Ashridge Management Index 2010

Paine Schofield, C.B., Dent, F. & Holton, V. (2010) The Ashridge Management Index 2010, Ashridge Report

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Employee Engagement and Motivation

Dent, F. & Holton, V. (2009) Employee Engagement and Motivation, Training Journal, pp. 37 - 40, November

Motivation and Employee Engagement in the 21st Century: A Survey of management Views

In 2008 Ashridge conducted research entitled „the Ashridge Management Index‟ to understand more about the issues and challenges facing managers. The survey covered a variety of key topics including leadership, communication, learning and development; it also provided some interesting data about personal and organisational motivation. As a result of this research we felt there would be value in looking more closely at motivation and particular questions included: Managers views about the current motivational approaches offered by their employers, for example are organisations using the right approach? And what are the key factors which motivate managers? Do managers find it easy to motivate their staff? What are the implications of these findings for leaders, HR directors and managers? We distributed a survey questionnaire to some of those managers involved in the earlier survey and also to a new group of individuals attending Ashridge programmes during the first three months of 2009. As a result, a total of 210 managers responded to our survey. In addition, we conducted a number of company interviews including the engineering consultancy firm, Halcrow Group.

Holton, V., Dent, F. & Rabbetts, J. (2009) Motivation and Employee Engagement in the 21st Century: A Survey of management Views, An Ashridge Report, September

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Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century

Holton, V., Dent, F. & Rabbetts, J. (2008) Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century, Ashridge Management Index

Leadership and Management issues in the UK Public Sector

Paine Schofield, C.B., Holton, V., Pegg, M., Sweeny, D. & Rizzello, J. (2008) Leadership and Management issues in the UK Public Sector, Public Management Index Report 2008, Ashridge, November

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Leadership and Management Issues in the UK Public Sector: Findings from and online survey - 2008

Paine Schofield, C.B., Holton, V. & Pegg, M. (2008) Leadership and Management Issues in the UK Public Sector: Findings from and online survey, 7th International Conference on Studying Leadership, 8 - 9 December, The University of Auckland Business School, Auckland, New Zealand

What leading a consortium is really all about

Following our work with colleges and training providers around employer responsiveness issues, Ashridge has established an action research project looking at partnership working in the education sector. This report outlines the learning from our first action research workshop in this theme (June 2008), in which providers from public, private and voluntary organisations came to Ashridge to share their experiences and to help shape our future work in this area.

Abington, A., Holton, V. & Shaw, G. (2008) What leading a consortium is really all about, An action research programme on the partnership experiences of public, private and voluntary sector training providers, Ashridge Education and Skills, Ashridge

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Leadership and Management development trends

There is a good deal of interest in leadership and management development but relatively little information on the views of managers on this topic. Ashridge research which has recently been conducted (published in April 2008) examined the views of over 800 managers on a number of key issues such as whether organisations are currently doing enough to develop the next generation of leaders.

Dent, F. & Holton, V. (2008) Leadership and Management development trends, The Ninth International Conference on Human Resource Development Research and Practice Across Europe, 21 - 23 May, Lille

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Ashridge Management Index 2008: Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century

Having a high quality management team and a motivated workforce is vital for a business to succeed and is what often differentiates a good employer from a mediocre or poor employer. The purpose of this year’s Ashridge Management Index was to examine the current business environment and to better understand some of the key challenges and opportunities which exist for managers. The research was conducted in autumn 2007 and a questionnaire was distributed. In total 839 responses were received. The majority of respondents are senior and middle managers. Just over half are working in the UK, a smaller number are elsewhere in Europe (23%) or working internationally (26%).

Holton, V., Dent, F. & Rabbetts, J. (2008) Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century, Ashridge Management Index 2008, April

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Leaders of the Future - Integrating Diversity within the Learning and Skills Sector

This report outlines a small research study designed to explore the career development of black and minority ethnic (BME) staff in the learning skills sector.The research examines the careers of successful individuals from race and ethnic minority backgrounds.Using qualitative research methods, this study found that lack of support, lack of inclusion, lack of career help and a tough work environment negatively impact on the careers of those interviewed. The support that individuals either receive or do not receive is just as critical as the difficulties caused by a tough work environment, the lack of career structure and career development. The research found a certain ambivalence from respondents about what is perceived to be 'special treatment' such as subsidised places on training programmes and the work of the Black Leadership Initiative. There is a feeling by some of those interviewed that they do not wish to be singled out in this way. The report concludes with various recommendations about recruitment and selection, organisational culture and career development.

Holton, V. & Bertie, C. (2007) Leaders of the Future - Integrating Diversity within the Learning and Skills Sector, in Researching Leadership in the Learning and Skills Sector:By the Sector, On the Sector, For the Sector, CEL Practitioner, pp.121 - 131, Vol. 1, Professor David Collinson (ed.)

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Trends in International Business Thought and Literature: Who's reading what? An international survey of popular management books.

Holton, V. (2007) Trends in International Business Thought and Literature: Who's reading what? An international survey of popular management books, The International Executive, Vol. 36, Issue 3, pp. 365 - 376. Published online: 6 February 2007

The Integration of CSR into SME Business Practice

Holton, V. (2007) The Integration of CSR into SME Business Practice, 20th EBEN Conference, 18-20 September

Leading Complex Teams: A model for the future

Jones, P. & Holton, V. (2007) Leading Complex Teams: A model for the future, World Futures Conference, Minneapolis, July

Small Firms and Employer Supported Volunteering: Developing a Strategy to take Forward the Work of Volunteering England.

Holton, V., Grayson, D. & Wilson, A. (2006) Small Firms and Employer Supported Volunteering: Developing a Strategy to take Forward the Work of Volunteering England, Volunteering England, August

E-learner Experiences: A lesson on in-house branding

Ettinger, A., Holton, V. & Blass, E. (2006) E-learner Experiences: A lesson on in-house branding, Industrial & Commercial Training, Vol. 38, No. 1, pp 33-36

E-learner Experiences: Key questions to ask when considering implementing e-learning

Ettinger, A., Holton, V. & Blass, E. (2006) E-learner Experiences: Key questions to ask when considering implementing e-learning, Industrial & Commercial Training, Vol. 38, No.3, pp 143 - 147

E-learner Experiences: What is the future for e-learning?

Ettinger, A., Holton, V. & Blass, E. (2006) E-learner Experiences: What is the future for e-learning?, Industrial & Commercial Training, Vol. 38, No. 4/5, pp.208 - 212.

Leading Complex Teams

Jones, P., & Holton, V. (2006) Leading Complex Teams, Studying Leadership, Knowledge into Action Fifth International Annual Conference on Leadership, Cranfield, December 14 - 15

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Engaging Small Firms in CSR

There is a good deal of interest about the views of small firms (SMEs) with regard to corporate social responsibility (CSR) but relatively little information on this topic. Ashridge research conducted earlier this year examined the best ways to engage SMEs with volunteering. Volunteering is only a part of the broader CSR agenda but we believe our findings are relevant more generally, both to academics and to others interested in how best to engage SMEs in corporate responsibility.

Holton, V. (2006) Engaging Small Firms in CSR, The Integration of CSR into SME Business Practice, Copenhagen Business School Conference on Key EABIS Research Theme, Copenhagen, Denmark, 26 October

Recognising Differences in Achievement: The Case for a Separate Classification for Qualifications Undertaken by E-Learning

Blass, E., Ettinger, A., & Holton, V. (2006) Recognising Differences in Achievement: The Case for a Separate Classification for Qualifications Undertaken by E-Learning, in Lei, F. (ed) Social Implications and Challenges of E-Business, Idea Publishing Group

E-Learning research 2006: a snapshot of current issues and future trends

Ettinger, A. & Holton, V. (2006) E-Learning research 2006: a snapshot of current issues and future trends, ISIDA School of Business Conference:Management Education in the Euro-Mediterranean Area, Palermo, July

Teams Today - Taking the Strain

Drawing on in-depth research, Pam Jones and Viki Holton explore the communication, organisational support and the different skills and competencies requred to lead and work in complex teams.

Jones, P. & Holton, V. (2006) Teams Today - Taking the Strain, 360° The Ashridge Journal, Spring, pp. 24 - 31

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Teams Succeeding in Complexity

Jones, P. & Holton, V. (2006) Teams Succeeding in Complexity, Ashridge Report

Diversity reporting: how European business is reporting equal opportunities

Holton, V. (2005) Diversity reporting: how European business is reporting equal opportunities, Women in Management Review, Vol. 20, Issue 1, pp 72-77, ISSN: 0964-9425

E-learning lessons from the sharp end: the BBC

Ettinger, A., Holton, V. (2005) E-learning lessons from the sharp end: the BBC, Training & Management Development Methods, Vol. 19, No.2, pp.6.07 - 6.12

What a Difference a Decade Makes: Ashridge Management Index Reports

Ten years since the last Ashridge Management Index, the 2004 survey makes some interesting revelations about the issues facing today’s managers. Andrew Wilson and Viki Holton share their thoughts.

Wilson, A. & Holton, V. (2005) What a Difference a Decade Makes: Ashridge Management Index Reports, 360° The Ashridge Journal, Spring, pp. 21 - 26

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E-learner Experiences: Learning from the Pioneers

Ettinger, A., Holton, V. & Blass, E. (2005) E-learner Experiences: Learning from the Pioneers, Industrial & Commercial Training, Vol. 37, No. 6/7, forthcoming

What a difference a decade makes

Ten years since the last Ashridge Management Index, the 2004 survey makes some interesting revelations about the issues facing today’s managers. Andrew Wilson and Viki Holton share their thoughts.

Wilson, A. & Holton, V. (2005) What a difference a decade makes, Engineering Management, October/November, pp 39-41.

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The Ashridge Management Index 2004: Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century

The success of any organisation stands or falls on the quality of its employees and managers. While it is true that more organisations now appreciate the key role individuals play in creating a world-class business, it can be a challenge to implement policies to achieve this. The aim of this Ashridge survey is to look at such challenges, to explore the situation managers are operating in and understand more about the issues which confront business today.

Wilson, A., Holton, V. & Curd, J. (2004) The Ashridge Management Index 2004: Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century, November

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E-learning: Revolutionary or Evolutionary?

Initial wild enthusiasm for e-learning has given way to more cautious practice.Viki Holton and Andrew Ettinger seek out the reality behind the hyperbole and disappointment.

Holton, V. & Ettinger, A. (2004) E-learning: Revolutionary or Evolutionary?, Innovations, pp 22-26.

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E-learning Research: The Findings and the Future

This research is based on a series of interviews with a variety of organisations. It looks at the potential problems present during the implementation of e-learning programmes, and evaluates the effectiveness of e-learning as a training method.

Ettinger, A. & Holton, V. (2004) E-Learning Research: The Findings and The Future, Ashridge Research, May.

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Virtual Realities

Yesterday's foe or tomorrow's friend? Andrew Ettinger and Viki Holton think it's time HR managers woke up to the potential of e-learning.

Ettinger, A. & Holton, V. (2004) Virtual Realities, People Management, Vol. 10, Issue 17, p. 46, 2 September.

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Diversity Reporting: How European Business is Reporting on Diversity and Equal Opportunities

Diversity reporting is still in its infancy. The growing public pressure for diversity reporting seems likely to continue, though at present there are few mandatory requirements. Pressure from shareholders, fund managers or pressure groups may help. Another less expected pressure point may come from a younger generation of workers who have higher expectations than their predecessors. The biggest change will occur when companies seize the business case for diversity. Viki Holton provides a snapshot of current diversity reporting in European companies.

Holton, V. (2004) Diversity Reporting: How European Business is Reporting on Diversity and Equal Opportunities, Women in Management Review, August

E-Learning - A Challenging Journey Started: Research Findings from Ashridge Business School

Viki Holton and Andrew Ettinger present their research into e-learning, considering its impact in various organisations.

Holton, V. & Ettinger, A. (2004) E-Learning – A Challenging Journey Started: Research Findings from Ashridge Business School, The 9th International Telework Workshop, Crete, September.

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Diversity Reporting Among European Companies

Viki Holton discusses the growing importance of diversity reporting, and its place in companies' approach to Corporate Social Responsibility.

Holton, V. (2004) Diversity Reporting Among European Companies, European Foundation for Management Development Conference, Madrid, June.

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Flexible Working: Opportunity or Threat to HR Professionals?

Viki Holton presents her research into flexible working, and the implications this has for HR professionals.

Holton, V. (2003) Flexible Working: Opportunity or Threat to HR Professionals?, International HR Management Conference, University of Limerick, June.

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The People Factor Driving Bottom Line Performance

Companies may proclaim that people are their greatest asset, but concern for the performance of individuals is often overlooked in the drive for short-term results. Research by Pam Jones and Viki Holton suggests that organisations need to think again to enable their people to deliver success in the future.

Jones, P. & Holton, V. (2003) The People Factor Driving Bottom Line Performance, Innovations,pp 13-19.

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Changing Manager Mindsets - Report of the Working Group on the Development of Professional Skills for the Practice of Corporate Social Responsibility

In December 2002, the Department of Trade and Industry and the Corporate Responsibility Group established a Working Group to report to the Minister of State for E-Commerce and Competitiveness, Stephen Timms. This report examines the working group's findings and recommendations.

Wilson, A. & Holton, V. (2003) Changing Manager Mindsets - Report of the Working Group on the Development of Professional Skills for the Practice of Corporate Social Responsibility, Department of Trade & Industry, The Corporate Responsibility Group.

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True Flexibility At Work - Attitudes Towards The 24/7 Culture

Wilson, A. & Holton, V. (2002) True Flexibility At Work - Attitudes Towards The 24/7 Culture, Ashridge Report

People are Our Greatest Asset

Holton, V., Jones, P., Kennedy, M. & Voller, S. (2002) People are Our Greatest Asset, Ashridge Report.

Developing Experts

The knowledge economy is spawning growing numbers of companies whose business relies on the expertise of highly trained staff. The latest Ashridge research examines the intricacies of nurturing and developing experts. Peter James and Viki Holton navigate.

James, P. & Holton, V. (2001) Developing Experts, Directions - The Ashridge Journal, Summer

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Womens Development & Training

Holton, V. (2001) Womens Development & Training, Women Managers, Blackwell Publication, ed. Ronald Burke

Getting the Balance Right

Jones, P. & Holton, V. (2000) Getting the Balance Right, Executive Women, Millennium issue, January

Creating More Effective Print Companies

James, P. & Holton, V. (2000) Creating More Effective Print Companies, The Print and Graphic Communication National Training Organisation

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A Strategic Approach to Management Development

James, P. & Holton, V. (2000) A Strategic Approach to Management Development, The Print and Graphic Communication National Training Organisation.

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Staff Training in Preparation for the European Monetary Union: a survey of the financial sector

Holton, V. & Robinson, S. (2000) Staff Training in Preparation for the European Monetary Union: a survey of the financial sector, Ashridge Report

Development and Motivation of R&D Staff, Volume 2

Development and Motivation of R&D Staff, Volume 2 Case Studies James, P. & Holton, V. (2000) Development and Motivation of R&D Staff, Ashridge Report.

James, P. & Holton, V. (2000) Development and Motivation of R&D Staff, Vol. 2, Ashridge Report

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Development and Motivation of R&D Staff, Volume 1

James, P. & Holton, V. (2000) Development and Motivation of R&D Staff, Ashridge Report, Vol. 1

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An Equal Chance to Succeed: Men and Women in Management

Holton, V. (1998) An Equal Chance to Succeed: Men and Women in Management, in Radford, J. (ed.) Gender and Choice in Education and Occupation, London, Routledge

Women Managers-Reflecting on the Glass Ceiling.

Holton, V. (1998) Women Managers-Reflecting on the Glass Ceiling, Ashridge Report, April

The Ashridge Management Index

Handy, L. Holton, V. & Wilson, A. (1997) The Ashridge Management Index, Ashridge Research

Women on the Board of Britains Top 200 Companies

Holton, V, Rabbetts, J. (1997) Women on the Board of Britains Top 200 Companies, Ashridge Report