Voluntary sector managers think they have significantly better political skills, such as developing partnerships and strategy, than private sector leaders.
A survey of almost 1,500 managers by the Chartered Management Institute revealed that third sector managers rated their skills at building alliances at an average of 4.04 out of five, whereas private sector bosses rated themselves at 3.89. Charity managers gave themselves 4.09 for strategic direction, compared with 3.94 in the private sector.
Mike Petrook, public affairs manager at the institute, said: "Charity managers have much more exposure to partnership development because it is so important to build up relationships in order to succeed."
Stephen Bubb, chief executive of chief executives body Acevo, said other sectors could learn from charity leaders. "Third sector leaders must have the political acumen to manage negotiations with the board as well as managing staff and public image," he said.